22 Hemp Hats: Sustainable Style and UV Protection

Hemp Hats for Men and Women

Who knew there was such a variety of hemp hats? I certainly didn’t until I was doing my research for this post. But it makes sense, as hemp is one of the most versatile natural materials available when it comes to the diversity of products it can be used for, from food to body lotion, shoes, and more.

You’ll find a lot of hemp products on UniGuide because it’s such a superstar sustainable material. It can be grown easily without using pesticides, insecticides, or fungicides. Naturally antimicrobial, hemp is a great fiber to be used in hats, shoes, clothing, and even underwear because it’s breathable and it doesn’t hold on to odors. Another perk: it’s naturally resistant to ultraviolet light, which means it doesn’t fade easily, and it will protect your skin from UV rays. And one last thing about this miracle fiber: like your favorite pair jeans, hemp fabric gets softer with age.

So, without further ado, here are some awesome hemp hats.

 

1. Hemp News Boy Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp News Boy Hat

Angelique Ell, founder of A. Ell Designs, creates ethical and eco-friendly clothing and accessories in her workshops in beautiful Kapaa, Hawaii and Portland, Oregon. Her creations are all made with natural fibers, such as hemp, bamboo, Tencel, and organic cotton.

This cool newsboy hat is made with a hemp-cotton blend, and it’s reversible, so you get two hats in one.

Each hat is custom made, so you get your choice of colors combinations in black, ivory, natural, brown, red, or olive green.

Hemp News Boy Hat

Price: ~$48.00

Buy on Etsy

 

2. Hemp Engineer’s Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp Engineer’s Hat

Another great hemp hat from A. Ell Designs, this engineer’s cap is also handmade. The fabric is a blend of hemp and other natural fibers. A. Ell’s hats are made with scraps from their other creations, which helps cut down on textile waste in our landfills. This hat is also reversible, so you get two hats in one.

Available colors: black, ivory, tan, brown, red, olive green, and purple

Price: ~$48.00

Buy on Etsy

 

3. Tilley Hemp Engineer Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tilley Hemp Engineer Hat

In 1980, Alex Tilley, an avid sailor, couldn’t find the perfect sailing hat, so he made his own. From that first hat, Tilley Hats was born. Today, Tilley makes a variety of styles of hats, all designed for different types of activities. All of Tilley’s hats are guaranteed for life.

This classic engineer’s hat is made with hemp and it’s lightweight and packable, making it the perfect travel hat.

Available colors: white and brown

Price: ~$36.19 – $64.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Hemp Trucker Hat

Hemp Trucker Hat

When none other than a trucker hat will do, there’s this cool trucker’s cap with a breathable hemp front panel by Mato. It has a mesh back and an adjustable back strap. Mato makes a variety of accessories with eco-friendly hemp.

Price: ~$29.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Navy Blue Hemp Baseball Cap

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Navy Blue Hemp Baseball Cap

This classic baseball-style hat is made with 100% hemp canvas. It’s biodegradable and naturally UV ray resistant. It has an adjustable snap-back closure. Hempzoo creates a variety of cool clothing and accessories with Earth-friendly hemp.

Price: ~$19.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

6. Hempy’s Unstructured Aussie Surf Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hempy’s Unstructured Aussie Surf Hat

Known for their hemp wallets, Hempy’s makes eco-friendly accessories with – you guessed it – hemp! While this hemp hat’s name pays tribute to Australian surfers, it’s made in the good ol’ USA.

Price: ~$26.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Five Panel Hemp Hat

Five Panel Hemp Hat

With a little extra brim, this five-panel cap will block the sun and keep your head cool with its light gray color. It’s made with 30% hemp, 30% polyester, and 40% cotton.

Times Hemp Company is based in Malibu, California, where they are big advocates for environmental stewardship and making eco-friendly products with sustainable hemp.

Price: ~$18.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Limited Edition Hemp Bigfoot Hat

Limited Edition Hemp Bigfoot Hat

Do I have any Bigfoot fans in the audience? I know I’m one! I even have a park ranger friend who swears he saw one once. He did an impersonation for me of the way Bigfoot ran away into the trees… How could I not be a believer? This hemp Bigfoot hat is a great way to signal to other believers out there. Get one while supplies last!

Price: ~$54.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Hemp Explorer’s Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp Explorer’s Hat

Made with 100% hemp canvas, this classic explorer’s hat is made in the USA. It’s got a wide brim and a roomy crown, plus brass ventilation eyelets and an adjustable strap, making it comfortable to wear throughout your daily adventures.

Available colors: natural, navy blue, brown, and pale green

Price: ~$42.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Tilley Hemp Indiana Jones Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tilley Hemp Indiana Jones Hat

Another classic style from Tilley’s, this Indiana Jones-style hemp hat is certified with UPF 50+ sun protection. It’s also water repellent and has a secret safety pocket for your valuables.

Available colors: brown, gray, and off-white

Tilley Hemp Indiana Jones Hat in White

Price: ~$71.00 – $88.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Tilley Women’s Hemp Panama Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tilley Women’s Hemp Panama HatThis ladies’ Panama-style hemp hat is also rated for UPF 50+ sun protection. Perfect for all kinds of adventures, it repels rain and has a tie to keep it on in convertible rides or windy days at the beach. Plus, it floats, making it perfect for island hopping, boating adventures, or lounging by the pool. The brim is 3” on the front and sides and 2.75” in the back. It’s made with 100% hemp fabric, and it’s machine-washable.

Price: ~$88.20 – $105.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

12. Gottex Women’s Brimmed Hemp Straw Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Gottex Women’s Brimmed Hemp Straw Hat

For a little extra flair, check out this 100% hemp sun hat. It’s easily packable and protects your head and face from harmful UV rays. It’s perfect for the beach, traveling, horseback riding, gardening, al fresco dining, lounging by the pool, and more. The brim measures 4.5” and an internal drawstring enables the perfect fit.

Price: ~$135.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. Gigi Burn Millinery Hemp Straw Sun Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Gigi Burn Millinery Hemp Straw Sun Hat

Ultra-stylish, this hemp hat is handmade in the USA and comes with a ruffle rosette and a cotton band. It’s perfect accessory to top off a summer outfit and to wear on sunny days at the beach, wine tasting, or bopping around town.

Price: ~$400.00

Buy Now at Nordstrom

 

14. Tilley Classic Brimmed Hemp Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tilley Classic Brimmed Hemp HatA classic chapeau, this brimmed hat by Tilley is made in Canada with 100% hemp. As with all Tilley hats, it comes with a lifetime guarantee and is insured against loss. It repels the rain and is certified for UPF 50 sun protection. Plus, it comes with a cute, tuck-away chin strap, making it perfect for convertible rides and windy strolls.

Price: ~$81.00 – $90.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Organic Hemp Bucket Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Organic Hemp Bucket Hat

For some classic boho flair, you can’t go wrong with this cute bucket hat by Hemp4Life. It’s made with a hemp-cotton blend yarn. Based in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, Hemp4Life creates handmade hats and other accessories with organic, sustainable hemp. I featured some of their crochet beanie hats, for men and women, here on UniGuide.

Price: ~$24.90

Buy on Etsy

 

16. Crochet Hemp Sun Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Crochet Hemp Sun Hat

Here’s another cute hemp hat from Hemp4Life. It’s the perfect travel hat, as it packs easily but will retain its shape. Plus, it offers a bit of sun protection with its short brim. This hat also comes in orange and natural.

Price: ~$24.90

Buy on Etsy

 

17. Kathmandu Rainbow Hemp Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Kathmandu Rainbow Hemp Hat

This might possibly be the most perfect hemp hat. It’s handmade with 100% hemp from the Himalayas. The rainbow rings can only mean whoever wears this hat will be filled with joy and will bring smiles to other people’s faces.

Price: ~$36.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

18. Boho Chic Hemp Crochet Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Boho Chic Hemp Crochet Hat

Here’s another happy hemp hat with boho chic flair. It’s handmade in Thailand and comes in a variety of fun color combinations.

Price: ~$22.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

19. Hemp Corduroy Fedora Hat

Hemp Corduroy Fedora Hat

You can’t go wrong in life with hemp corduroy crownin’ your noggin! This cool corduroy fedora hat from Hempy’s is made in the USA with a cotton-hemp blend.

Price: ~$38.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

20. Stetson Hemp Hats

Stetson Hemp Hats

Founded in 1865 by John B. Stetson, Stetson Hats is most famous for being the creator the cowboy hat. But you don’t have to be a cowboy or a cowgirl to wear a Stetson. In this case, you just have to be willing to wear some superbly crafted hemp straw on your head.

Stetson Hemp Hats Light

Price: ~$71.00 – $125.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

21. Brimmed Hemp Bucket Hat

Brimmed Hemp Bucket Hat

This cute bucket hat is soft, packable, foldable, and crushable – but it won’t crease. It’s made with a hemp, cotton, and polyester fabric blend and has the feel of soft textured linen.

Available colors: orange and white

Price: ~$11.19

Buy Now on Amazon

 

22. Hemp Slouchy Hats

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp Slouchy HatIn addition to their brimmed hats, Hemp4Life hand crochets a number of colorful hemp slouchy hats. You can see more in my posts on guys’ beanies and gals’ beanies.

Price: $21.90 – $34.90

Buy on Etsy

Interested in other products made with eco-friendly hemp? Check out these posts on UniGuide:

Hemp Shoes

Hemp Dog Collars

Vegan Handbags

Hand Creams and Body Lotions

Laptop Cases

20 Cute Beanies for Women: Slouchy, Crochet, and Vegan

Cute Women's Beanies

Whether it’s still cold where you live or the sun is starting to warm your skin, these cute beanie hats are the perfect accessory to top of any casual look. There are cute slouchies, made with hemp and other natural materials like linen and organic cotton, plus soft, warm knit ski hats made with recycled plastic and more.

As usual on UniGuide, all of the hats featured in this post are vegan, so no wool or cashmere found here. But that doesn’t mean these caps aren’t soft and comfy enough to wear all day.

While the styles here are mostly for gals, far be it from me to gender stereotype. Welcome, Gentleman! Or, you can see more styles in my post about cool beanies for guys.

 

1. Women’s Organic Cotton Slouchy Sun Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Women’s Organic Cotton Slouchy Sun Hat

Based in Osaka, Japan, Charm is a family-run business that hand makes a variety of cute and casual hats for women and men. This style is made with 100% organic cotton, so it will be comfortable against your skin, with no itching. It has a subtly brim to protect your face from the sun. Plus, it’s reversible, so you get two hats in one.

Price: ~$25.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Women’s Lightweight Slouchy Knit Hat Made with Linen

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Women’s Lightweight Slouchy Knit Hat Made with Linen

This cute, lightweight slouchy is also handmade by Charm in Japan. It’s 100% linen, so it’s lightweight and breathable, plus it’s comfortable enough to wear in warm weather and will protect your head from the sun. Like hemp and denim, linen gets softer with age and the more you wear it.

Price: ~$18.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. Rouched Slouchy Knit Hat

Rouched Slouchy Knit Hat

For a truly slouchy look, check out this cute hat by Charm. It has a scrunched rouched look and is made with a soft heather knit.

Available colors: black, khaki, navy blue, and gray

Price: ~$24.69

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. SoulRole Organic Cotton and Soy Spandex Knit Cap

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

SoulRole Organic Cotton and Soy Spandex Knit Cap

SoulRole designs and hand makes ethical clothing in their workshop on the beautiful Hamakua Coast in Laupahoehoe, Hawaii. All of their designs use organic and eco-friendly fabrics. You can see some of their eco-friendly hoodies here on UniGuide. And be sure to check out more of their sublime styles in their Etsy store.

This cute red hat is handmade with organic cotton and soy-based Spandex.

Price: ~$26.95

Buy on Etsy

 

5. Super Slouchy Organic Cotton Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Super Slouchy Organic Cotton Beanie

Bring out your inner Smurf in this super slouchy organic cotton beanie by SoulRole. The fabric is luxuriously soft, with enough stretch to keep it comfortably on your head as you dance, fun around town, or engage in other fun activities.

Available in multiple colors

Price: ~$25.00

Buy on Etsy

 

6. Organic Cotton and Recycled Plastic and Guitar Knit Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Organic Cotton and Recycled Plastic and Guitar Knit Hat

This cute knit cap is made with a soft, organic cotton and recycled polyester blend fabric. And it’s got a gold guitar emblazoned on the front that’s printed with a non-toxic, water-based ink. This cute knit hat is hand made in the USA in the beautiful state of Florida.

Price: ~$20.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Hemp and Cotton Crochet Slouchy

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp and Cotton Crochet Slouchy

Based in Russia, Hemp4Life hand makes make a variety of comfortable, stylish clothes with eco-friendly hemp. The company’s founders, Alena and Sergey, says they are evangelists for the powerful properties of hemp as a sustainable material. And when you wear this cute hat, you will be too!

This cute slouchy is handmade with hemp and cotton knit, and it will get softer with age. It will keep your head warm in winter and cool in summer. Hemp is naturally resistant to ultraviolet light, which means the colors in the cap won’t fade easily, and the hat will protect your head form harmful UV rays. Be sure to visit Hemp4Life’s Etsy shop to see more of their unique designs.

Price: ~$21.90-$34.90

Buy on Etsy

 

8. Hemp and Cotton Brimmed Hats

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hemp and Cotton Brimmed HatsAnother cute hat from Hemp4Life, this style is not quite a beanie, but I thought it deserved to be in this post. It’s handmade with a hemp-cotton blend that will get softer with age. Hemp is a naturally breathable material, plus it serves as a natural protector from the sun, as hemp fiber absorbs up to 90% of UV radiation.

Available in a few different colors

Price: ~$24.90

Buy on Etsy

 

9. Extra Wide Hemp Head Bands

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Extra Wide Hemp Head Bands

Another style that’s not quite a beanie hat, but super cute, this extra-wide headband is a great way to keep your hair back with a little extra colorful flair. It’s made with a hemp cotton blend.

Available in multiple colors

Price: ~$21.90

Buy on Etsy

 

10. Crochet Hats by Natalia Yakimenko

Ladies Crochet Hat

Natalia Yakimenko handmakes her lovely crochet hats in the Ukraine with cotton yarn. Each hat is one-of-a-kind and made to order. Be sure to visit her Etsy store to see all of her creations.

Cute Crochet Beanie for Women

Price: ~$43.00

Buy on Etsy

 

11. Acrylic Chunky Knit Hat

Acrylic Chunky Knit HatIf you’re a big fan of texture, you’ll love these chunky knit hats by Forever Andrea. There are a variety of styles and colors made with soft, vegan, non-wool acrylic yarn. Each hat is one-of-a-kind and made to order.

Available in multiple colors

Price: ~$23.99 – $29.00

Buy on Etsy

 

12. Women’s Recycled Fleece Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Women’s Recycled Fleece HatThis cute hat is warm enough to wear snowboarding or for any chilly evening. It’s made with Polartec Thermal Pro, which is a soft fleece that’s made with recycled fibers. It’s also breathable, so comfortable to wear for any of your cold weather activities.

Available colors: neon green, hot pink, purple, dark purple, or black

Price: ~$29.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. United by Blue Recycled Polyester Pom Pom Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

United by Blue Recycled Polyester Pom Pom Beanie

This cute pom pom cap is from United by Blue, a socially-conscious, mission-driven company that removes one pound of trash from the world’s oceans and waterways with every product they sell. A cute hat and a great cause – what a great way to top off your look! This cuffed beanie hat is made with 100% recycled polyester.

Available in multiple colors.

Price: ~$38.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. United by Blue Recycled Knit Cap

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

United by Blue Recycled Knit Cap

Another classic knit hat from United by Blue, this cap is also made with 100% recycled polyester. Your purchase will help to remove one pound of trash from the world’s oceans, riverways, and lakes. Now this is a beanie you can wear with pride!

Available colors: brown, navy, green, and red

Price: ~$28.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Solmate Colorful Recycled Cotton Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Cute, Colorful Recycled Cotton Beanie

This colorful cap is made with recycled cotton yarn, plus a little bit of polyester and Lycra for soft stretch. Solmate is most known for their colorful, recycled cotton socks. You can check those out in the Amazon shop.

Multiple color combinations available

Price: ~$26.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

16. North Face Vegan Knit Cap

North Face Vegan Knit Cap

Who needs wool? This classic knit hat is ultra-warm and it’s made with soft, 100% synthetic, vegan-friendly materials.

Available colors: black, charcoal gray, olive green, red, navy blue, white, burgundy red

Price: ~$48.98

Buy Now on Amazon

 

17. Burton Knit Ski Hat

Burton Knit Ski Hat

If you like a little extra slouch with your ski hat, check out this knit hat by Burton. It’s made with 100% vegan-friendly acrylic knit.

Available colors: black, heather gray, rose, tan, forest green, moss green, olive green, pale orange, burgundy red

Price: ~$14.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

18. Burton Waffle Knit Hat

Burton Waffle Knit Hat

Here’s another vegan-friendly knit hat by Burton. It’s warm enough for snow ball fights, and it fits close to the head. It’s made with 100% waffle knit acrylic and has a fold-up rim.

Available colors: teal and red

Price: ~$19.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

19. Vegan Brimmed Beanie Hat

Vegan Brimmed Beanie Hat

For a little extra styling on your beanie, check out this brimmed cap from Folie Co. It’s made with 100% acrylic. The visor brim measures 2.5”, giving you some extra protection from the cold wind and sun.

Available colors: charcoal, black, red, teal blue, rose

Price: ~$15.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

20. Pussy Hats

Vegan Pussy Hats

In these political times, every gal should own at least one pussy hat. This cute style takes a colorful spin on the classic all pink hat. It’s made with vegan-friendly yarn. Check out more cute pussy hats on Etsy. (Though for my vegan friends, please read the products details, as many are made with wool.)

See you at the next march, Ladies!

Price: ~$10.00 – $35.00

Buy on Etsy

Kickstarter May Play a Big Role in Making Products and Supply Chains More Eco-Friendly

A Kickstarter All Hands Meeting, Brookly, New York
Kickstarter all hands meeting, Brooklyn, New York. Photo: Fred Benenson.

Since the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter launched in April 28, 2009, independent backers have pledged a whopping $4.1 billion to tens of thousands of new projects, from a drone camera that will record an aerial video of your mountain biking excursions to an illustrated book about egrets and climate change.

Kickstarter Project: The White Heron Beneath the Reactor by Gary Budden
Kickstarter Project: The White Heron Beneath the Reactor by Gary Budden.

And now the platform is taking things both back a step and forward a step by asking creators to consider the environmental impacts of the entire life cycle of their creations.

Teaming up with the Environmental Defense Fund’s (EDF) Climate Corps, Kickstarter is developing an information hub for project creators, plus they’ll provide space on project profiles where creators can commit to environmental practices.

So, instead of creating products and then dealing with the environmental consequences later, project creators can build environmental commitments into their projects at the outset in key areas:

  • Long-lasting design
  • Reusability
  • Recyclability
  • Sustainable materials
  • Environmentally-friendly mass production
  • And sustainable fulfillment and distribution

The new profile features will enable potential backers of a project to consider a creator’s commitment to environmental sustainability before they decide to back them.

“Project creators check boxes to indicate their product will have a long-lasting design, consist of recycled products, will be manufactured in environmentally friendly factories, use sustainable distribution channels and so on,” said Daniel Hill, a project manager with EDF’s Climate Corps. “It’s all with the goal of reducing their project’s impact on the planet and to, in Kickstarter’s words, ‘stand out to potential backers.’”

“We think the rapidly growing platform is uniquely positioned to become a real and lasting force in the development of environmentally sustainable design and manufacturing processes worldwide – and that means it would also have an impact on far-flung supply chains,” Hill added.

Recycled Carbon Chair by LABEL/BREED.
Recycled Carbon Chair by LABEL/BREED.

The global retail market is a $31 trillion industry. So, the push by a well-known, global platform that’s a trailblazer for new product development promises to shed a needed spotlight on how products are designed, built, distributed, and disposed of.

Kickstarter is a public benefit corporation, which means it has corporate goals that extend beyond simply maximizing shareholders’ returns to benefitting the general public at large.

“These new features are our biggest step yet toward fulfilling that commitment,” said Perry Chen, Kickstarter’s chairman and CEO.

 

You can fund The White Heron Beneath the Reactor here.

You can fund the Recycled Carbon Chair here.

Need a Vacation? Here Are Some Tropical Paradise Photos to Take You Away…

Whether you need a little motivation to save up for your next vacation or to get swimsuit-ready – or, heck, even if you need to be reminded that you deserve a vacation, here are some spectacular photos of sunny beaches and other tropical paradises to help you envision your next getaway. Be sure to follow these Instagrammers to see more of their photos!

 

Bora Bora

 

Kao Sok National Park, Thailand

 

Thailand

 

Greece

 

Santorini

 

Cuba

 

St. Lucia

 

Hawai’i

 

Kauai

 

Bali

 

Costa Rica

 

Jamaica

 

St. Lucia

 

Port Vila, Efate

 

Batam Island

Bon Voyage!

Happy Birthday, Edward Abbey

edard-abbey-the-monkey-wrench-gangToday is Edward Abbey’s birthday. For those of you who haven’t read any of his books, he is probably most known for The Monkey Wrench Gang, which was published in 1975.

The Monkey Wrench Gang centers around the wilderness of the American West and four main characters who resort to extreme measures (including destroying construction sites and heavy equipment) to protect the wilderness from industrial development. It’s an engaging and fun read about a serious topic and it played a role in shaping the modern day environmental movement. I’ve heard it’s going to be made into a movie, and all I can hope is they do it justice (which may be impossible).

I read The Monkey Wrench Gang when I was an environmental studies major in college. At that time, there was a lot of controversy over the logging of old growth forests in northern California. Trees that had been alive since Christopher Columbus came to America, and even earlier – during the Roman Empire – were being cut down for timber. Today, there is only 5% of the old growth redwood forests left.

Old Growth Redwood Trees in Headwaters Forest
Old Growth Redwoods, Headwaters Forest, southeast of Eureka, California. Photo: Bureau of Land Management.

During Redwood Summer, which is what the collective anti-logging activities were referred to, I drove some friends and fellow activists in my old Ford Econoline van from San Francisco to northern California to join the protests.

Because I had a van full of people, it seemed perfectly normal to pick up hitchhikers along Highway 101.

The first hitchhiker we picked up was a lady in a long gray robe. Her gray hair was pulled back in a long braid and she introduced herself simply as Ellen. She explained with a serious yet serene face that she was coming from a three-month retreat where she had taken a vow of silence for the duration. Other than her introduction and telling us where she was headed, Ellen remained quiet, sitting on a pillow in the back of the van, listening to the rest of us talk about trees, music, and various traveling adventures.

Ford-Econoline-Van-550
My ’71 Ford Econoline van, Northern California during Redwood Summer, 1990.

The next hitchhiker we picked up was a big guy with a beard in jeans and a flannel shirt opened over a t-shirt.

His name was Bob and he was headed to Eureka.

“Where are you guys headed?” he asked.

‘We’re headed up to Arcata then back down to Fort Bragg for the logging protests,’ I said. ‘What do you do in Eureka?’

Out of my rearview mirror, I saw Bob’s eyes move from left then right, as if noticing for the first time that he was in the back of a van with two dogs, a Buddhist nun, and a bunch of hippies, one of whom was wearing a tie dyed t-shirt with “Hayduke Lives” printed in faded black letters across the front. (This was in honor of George Hayduke, the main character in The Monkey Wrench Gang.)

“I’m a logger,” Bob said. “Guess you better let me out.”

My friend Scott, the one in the tie dyed t-shirt, said, “Hey, hold on a sec! Let’s have a dialogue.”

“Pull over,” Bob said. “Let me out.”

“Come on, man. We’re not against you,” Scott said.

“Let me out of this damn van.”

I pulled over and Bob opened the sliding door and jumped out. He then shouted, “Get a job!” as he slammed the door shut.

Quiet Ellen burst out laughing. “Oh my,” she said. “Oh. My. That was something. That was something.”

It upset me that we didn’t get the chance to make friends with Bob. I also wanted to tell Bob that I did have a job.

I canvassed for Greenpeace.

 

Going Door-to-Door, Raising Money for Greenpeace

I met some interesting people when I went door-to-door, asking them for money. Aside from the rare creep, like the guy who answered the door in nothing but an open Hugh Hefner robe and invited me in to “talk about nature,” most people were congenial and generous.

We would canvass in the late afternoon and evening because more people were home, and so we’d often start the day in a neighborhood park, where we’d eat lunch and discuss the environmental issues we’d be covering in the field that day.

One hot summer day in Pleasanton, California, an upper middle class neighborhood 40 miles east of San Francisco, we stopped at a community park that had a giant fountain. The park was full of elderly people, moms, nannies, and kids.

Our team sat at a picnic table, discussing the day’s topics, when my friend Scott abruptly stood up and remarked, “It’s too damn hot.” (Yep, the same Scott who had wanted to dialogue with the lumberjack in my van.) Scott then walked over to the fountain, took off all of his clothes, dropped them into a heap, and waded buck naked into the fountain, and then laid on his back.

The citizens of Pleasanton stopped and stared as if a UFO had just landed.

With the rest of us giggling, our beleaguered team leader, Jeff, walked over and told Scott to put on his clothes. To us, Scott was just being Scott. For the residents of Pleasanton, he might as well have been a creepy guy in an open Hugh Hefner robe flashing everyone.

 

A Chemical Spill in the Sacramento River and a Narrow Escape

Sacramento River Delta
Photo: David Monniaux.

On another canvassing trip, this time to Sacramento, our main topic of discussion was a tanker train that had derailed, spilling 19,000 gallons of the chemical fumigant metam sodium into the Sacramento River. (Metam sodium is used primarily in agriculture to kill soil fungi, insects, and nematodes before planting.) The spill killed fish, among other things, and even made workers removing the dead fish ill.

At one door, I rang the bell and a lady in a house dress, smoking a cigarette, sauntered up to the closed screen door.

I introduced myself. ‘Hi, my name is Kristen and I’m from Greenpeace. We’re in your community today to raise awareness about issues impacting our planet. Do you know about the recent chemical spill in the Sacramento River?’

“I ain’t heard nothin’,” she said, as she continued smoking inside her screen door.

‘Well, unfortunately, it did happen,’ I said. ‘It caused a lot of destruction, poisoning the river and killing fish.’

“I ain’t heard nothin’,” she repeated.

‘Well, it’s true. Here’s an article in the paper about it,’ I said, as I pulled a Xeroxed sheet of paper from my clipboard to hand to her.

She still didn’t open her screen door.

“You don’t listen too well,” she said, “I told you I ain’t heard nothin’.”

All of my cool hippie chick aplomb crumbled away and, unable to control the heat rising in my head, I said, ‘Well, if people like you didn’t sit on your asses in oblivion all day, maybe we could change some things!’

At that, cigarette lady opened her eyes into large saucers, then squinted them back down again and took a drag off her cigarette. She exhaled in my face through the screen door and yelled, “Get off my propaty!”

‘Yeah, well, fuck you!’ I said.

That’s when she opened her screen door, and brandishing her cigarette like a weapon, she shrieked, “I said get off my propaty!!”

By then, I was halfway across her lawn. I saw my friend Dave, who was canvassing on the other side of the street, turn around, mouth agape, as I ran down the street. I only slowed down long enough to look back and see that cigarette lady had stopped short at the end of her front lawn, like a snarling junkyard dog halting at a chain link fence.

 

Happy Birthday, Edward Abbey

Thanks for inspiring me take a stand for what I believe in.

Books by Edward Abbey

33 Vegan Before and After Transformations

VeganTransformations600x130Stories of personal health transformations fascinate me because we live in a society that’s full of unhealthy, addictive temptations. Let’s face it – our whole economy is based around “wanting” – the creation of desire in human beings so we react and buy. Needless to say, this has gotten us into a lot trouble when it comes to food and eating. We all know about the obesity epidemic. And lifestyle-related health care costs are sky rocketing. Undoubtedly, the basis of this problem is the amount of addicting food products that permeate our culture.

As a person who struggles with food addictions, this is a subject I have thought about extensively. I am not an eat-a-few-corn-chips kind of gal. I am an eat-one-corn-chip-devour-the-whole-bag kind of gal. Thus, it’s best that I simply avoid corn chips altogether. I can’t go cold turkey from food, but I can go cold turkey from corn chips, and that works for me. To a person who doesn’t struggle with food addictions, this might seem trivial. But to the food and other self-acknowledged addicts among us – I’m sure you can relate! This is why I feel indebted to the people who share their own stories about overcoming addiction and other personal challenges. They make us realize we are not alone, and that if they can do it, we can too.

You can click these jump links if you want to skip more of my intro!

Vegan Before and After Photos

Vegan Before and After Transformation Videos

 

The Problem with Food Products, Which Are Not Food

Junk Food

We have a problem with addicting foods in our culture. In order to be competitive and economically viable, food product companies have gone to great lengths to ensure there’s a high degree of repeat wanting for their products. At the same time, as businesses, they have pressure to keep costs down while creating products that have a long shelf life. Factory farming, preservatives, and added sugar, salt, and hydrogenated fats are just some of the unhealthy byproducts of those economic drivers. The more addicting a food product is, the better it sells. And the lower the cost to produce it and keep it on the shelf, the more money the food product company makes. The result is fake food – products that barely resemble the whole foods that nature has been perfecting for eons.

 

Capitalism Gone Awry

I call this capitalism gone awry. It’s when business people, scientists, and technologists get too micro-focused on one metric – how much money can be made, while losing site of the broader ramifications of what they’re creating. I think one of the best aspects of the modern world is that we have easy access to information that gives us the bigger picture, if we care to look. We may not be growing our own food in our gardens, but at least we can get the background story on our food – where it comes from, what’s in it, what impact it’s having on our bodies, as well as on other people and animals. Finally, the medical establishment is starting to catch up, and we’re seeing more studies on the role that whole foods play in our overall health, well-being, and longevity.

 

Miraculous Transformations from Everyday People

In addition to scientific studies, one of the most vital ways that we’re getting the bigger picture on how whole foods make us feel is when people share their personal stories. The people profiled here overcame additions and other lifestyle-related challenges that held them back from realizing their full potential. At once, they are extraordinary. At the same time, they’re just normal people like you and me.

They make me think about Roger Bannister, who was the first person on record to run a sub-four-minute mile. He showed us that, yes, it’s humanly possible. And after he showed us, more and more people went on to run sub-four-minute miles. Today, it’s become a standard of athletic performance vs. an anomaly. Every person who overcomes a challenge like an addiction is a Roger Bannister in my book. They help us to set a higher standard for a more vibrant way of being. Without further ado, here are:

 

Vegan Before and After Photos

1.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Haven Gonzales (@mrs.veganmommy_) on

 

 

2.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Renay Jemison (@fusion39) on

 

3.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Chris Moore (@moore__chris) on

 

4.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Freedom Food (@freedomfoodlife) on

 

5.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Freedom Food (@freedomfoodlife) on

 

6.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Mariah Burkhardt (@veganmama22) on

 

7.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Madeline 🦄🏳️‍🌈🆅 (@hellafemme) on

 

8.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Eco Angel (@ecoangel_) on

 

9.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by It’s Easy Eating Greens (@easyeatinggreens) on

 

10.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Jen Melberg (@plantbasedwinendine) on

 

11.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Katie Moran (@vegan_vibez) on

 

Vegan Before and After Transformation Photos

12. Plant Based Guerilla

This video by vegan lifestyle guru the Plant Based Guerilla is a montage of vegan diet transformation that will help turbo charge your motivation to live a healthier lifestyle.

 

13. The Good Life Project (with Rich Roll)

In this video by the media company The Good Life Project, which focuses on helping people live more enriched lives, founder Jonathan Fields has a very candid conversation with Rich Roll. Rich talks about being a recovered addict and the positive influence that his wife Julie has had on his life. He also talks about how important it is to seize moments of clarity that can serve as a catalyst to help us change our lives for the better.

 

14. Rich Roll

Rich Roll’s book Finding Ultra is a must-read for anyone who needs that extra push to go all out vegan, and not to mention – get in great shape. This book had a huge impact on me. I had been a vegetarian for over 30 years, flirting with veganism, but never being able to remain consistently vegan. (I had a hard time giving up cheese!) Finding Ultra was one of those catalysts that turned me into a committed vegan. This means more than my saying, ‘Oh, that Rich Roll guy got me to give up cheese!’ I can truly say that this book is aptly named because it helped me to discover more of who I ultimately knew myself to be.

 

15. Hannah McNeely

Hannah McNeely shares a very candid story about her path to becoming not just vegan, but a healthy, fit, and vibrant vegan. This video is super helpful for those of us who can be roller coaster eaters – erratic eaters who have trouble maintaining consistently healthy eating habits

 

16. Raw Synergy

You’ve probably heard about the glow you get from eating a vegan diet that’s full of fruits and vegetables. In this video by Alicia Grant of Raw Synergy, she shares her personal story about suffering from acne and then discovering the key to having healthy, radiant skin.

 

17. Light Twins

With more men embracing a vegan lifestyle than ever before, it’s great to have as many male role models as possible helping them along the path. But whether you’re male or female, you’ll be sure to find some inspiration by checking out this video and others by the Light Twins.

 

18. Lissa’s Raw Food Romance

Lissa of Raw Food Romance changed her body and her life by adopting a raw food vegan diet. For outsiders, a raw vegan diet might seem extreme. But when you listen to Lissa speak in her sincere and no nonsense way, you’ll be convinced that the standard American junk food diet is the real extreme, and raw food vegan should be the norm.

 

19. Full Raw Kristina

Kristina Carrillo-Bucaram infuses positive vibes, authenticity, and sheer vibrancy into everything she does. Quite simply, we need more people like her. Whenever I watch her videos, I want to immediately start taking better care of myself and eat more fruits and vegetables!

 

20. Simnett Nutrition

A certified nutritionist, Derek of Simnett Nutrition is all about being a super strong and fit vegan. Some people want to lose weight when they go on a vegan diet; others want to build muscle mass. Derek shows you how to get it done.

 

21. Elle Tayla

Elle Tayla’s story is hard to watch on YouTube, as she struggled on and off with anorexia and body dysmorphic disorder. With the support of family and friends, good old self-reliance, and discovering a high-carb, low-fat vegan diet, she found her way back the health.

 

22. Infinite Waters

Renaissance Man Ralph Smart of Infinite Waters is a self-described “Infinite Being.” Watch his videos, and you’ll realize that you are too.

 

23. Sarah Nourse

Sarah Nourse and her husband went vegan after hearing activist Gary Yourofsky speak. With humility and generosity, Sarah shares her story about how in just six months, she and her husband lost weight and changed their lives for the better by embracing a vegan lifestyle.

 

24. The Urban Black Vegan

A recovered diabetic, The Urban Black Vegan was inspired to change his life after watching the groundbreaking movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. He’s on a mission to help people in his own community and beyond fight lifestyle-related chronic diseases and to get on the path to health.

 

25. High Carb Hannah

High carb Hannah drank too much, smoked, and overate. She chronicles her 70-pound weight loss and the life transformation that resulted from eating a whole food, plantbased diet.

 

26 – 33. More Vegan Transformation from Plant Based News

Vegan advocates Plant Based News also shared a great series of vegan before and after transformations that you must check out! (A couple of then are also above, so I didn’t double count them! :o)

Be sure to subscribe to the YouTube channels of these inspirational heroes, and best of luck on your own journey to health and vitality!

(As with much of the content you find on the Web today, take these videos as anecdotal, personal stories and consult with a medical professional if you have questions about making major dietary changes!)

 

18 Cool Beanies for Men: Hemp, Recycled, Organic Cotton & Vegan

Cool Men's Beanies and Knit Hats
Here are some cool beanies for men in an assortment of materials that also happen to vegan. I found a number of great styles made from fabric blends that will keep your head warm in the winter (without using itchy wool) or cool in the summer and protected from the sun.

The best beanies for men look great while being made with eco-friendly materials, like hemp, organic cotton, and recycled polyester. So, whether you’re looking for a slouchy hat, a fitted skully, or a longshoreman-style knit cap, you’ll find some great options here.

 

1. Soul Role Organic Cotton and Hemp Beanie Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Soul Role Organic Cotton and Hemp Beanie Hat

Based on the beautiful Hamakua Coast in Laupahoehoe, Hawaii, SoulRole handcrafts ethical clothing using organic, eco-friendly fabrics. You can see some of their eco-friendly hoodies here on UniGuide.

These heather hats are made with an organic cotton and hemp jersey blend, making them super soft to the touch and comfy enough to wear all day without being itchy.

Available colors: storm gray, light brown, red wine, stone blue, and forest green

Men’s Organic Cotton and Hemp Knit Colors

Price: ~$24.95

Buy on Etsy

 

2. Men’s Organic Cotton and Hemp Slouchy Knit Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Men’s Organic Cotton and Hemp Slouchy Knit HatAnother cool style from SoulRole, this men’s slouch beanie is also handmade with naturally stretchy organic cotton and hemp blend fabric.

Price: ~$25.00

Buy on Etsy

 

3. Recycled Plastic and Organic Cotton Guitar Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Recycled Plastic and Organic Cotton Guitar Beanie

This cool, heather gray beanie has a gold guitar emblazoned on the front. It’s made with an organic cotton and recycled polyester blend fabric. The guitar is printed with a non-toxic, water-based ink. It’s made in the USA in Florida.

Price: ~$20.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Colorful Hemp and Cotton Handmade Crochet Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Colorful Hemp and Cotton Handmade Crochet Beanie

A truly unique slouchy hat, this colorful beanie is handmade with a hemp and cotton knit that gets softer with age. It will keep your head warm in winter and cool in summer. Plus, hemp is highly resistant to ultraviolet light, which means it won’t fade easily in sunlight and will protect your head form harmful rays.

Based in Russia, Hemp4Life’s founders Alena and Sergey are evangelists for the powerful properties of hemp as a sustainable material, which can be used to make a wide variety of comfortable, stylish clothes. Be sure to visit Hemp4Life’s Etsy shop to see more of their designs.

Price: ~$21.90

Buy on Etsy

 

5. Men’s Linen Slouch Beanie

Men’s Linen Slouch BeanieThis cool and versatile vegan slouch hat is made with linen, cotton, and spandex.

Available colors: black, dark gray, light gray, and navy blue

Price: ~$25.62

Buy on Etsy

 

6. Men’s 100% Hemp Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Men’s 100% Hemp Beanie

Lightweight enough to wear in summer, this open knit slouchy cap is handmade with 100% hemp yarn. Hemp is highly resistant to ultraviolet light, which makes it ideal for protecting your head from the sun.

Available colors: black, dark gray, light gray, and beige

Price: ~$22.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Brimmed Skully Hat

Brimmed Skully Hat

This cool skullcap is handmade with 100% cotton. It has a subtle brim for a little extra, understated style.

Price: ~$17.61

Buy on Etsy

 

8. Men’s Recycled Cotton Knit Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Men’s Recycled Cotton Knit Hat

This classic ski hat by Coal is made with recycle cotton yarn.

Available colors: black, gray, mustard, and red

Price: ~$22.50 – $34.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Men’s Acrylic Slouch Beanie

Men’s Acrylic Slouch BeanieAnother style from Coal, this cap has a little extra room for slouch. It’s made with 100% acrylic yarn, which is a great cruelty-free alternative to wool that will still keep your head warm.

Available colors: black, charcoal gray, striped multi, green, blue, purple, and burgundy red

Price: ~$25.18

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Recycled Fleece Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Recycled Fleece Hat

Made with recycled fibers, this Polartech fleece cap will keep your head comfortable and warm. Polartech is breathable, lightweight, and easy to pack, which makes this the perfect travel hat.

Price: ~$29.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. United by Blue Socially Conscious 100% Recycled Ski Hat

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

United by Blue Socially Conscious 100% Recycled Ski Hat

United by Blue is a mission-driven, socially conscious company that removes one pound of trash from the world’s oceans and waterways with every product they sell.

This cuffed ski hat is made with 100% recycled polyester.

Available in multiple colors.

Price: ~$38.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

12. United by Blue Recycled Mariner Beanie

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

United by Blue Recycled Mariner Beanie

Another great eco-friendly hat, this classic mariner’s cap is made with 100% recycled polyester. Your purchase will help to remove one pound of trash from the world’s oceans, riverways, and lakes.

Available colors: brown, navy, green, and red

Price: ~$28.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. North Face Salty Dog Knit Cap

North Face Salty Dog Knit Cap

Another classic, longshoreman-style beanie, this cap is from the North Face and it’s made with 100% synthetic, vegan-friendly materials.

Available colors: black, charcoal gray, olive green, red, navy blue, white, burgundy red

Price: ~$34.50 – $77.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. Burton Knit Hat

Burton Knit Hat

A classic ski hat with a little bit of slouch, this cap is made with 100% acrylic.

Available colors: black, heather gray, rose, tan, forest green, moss green, olive green, pale orange, burgundy red

Price: ~$24.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Men’s Slouch Beanie and Neck Warmer

Men’s Slouch Beanie and Neck Warmer

For cold days, check out this slouchy hat and neck warmer combo. It’s made with soft, stretchy polyester. The double-layer material is windproof, making it great for outdoors adventures.

Available colors: black, navy blue, brown, red, and light gray

Price: ~$14.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

16. Men’s Vegan Brimmed Beanie

Men’s Vegan Brimmed Beanie

If you’re looking for a brimmed beanie made with vegan-friendly materials, check out this 100% acrylic style by Folie Co. The visor brim measures 2.5”, providing extra protection from the cold, wind, and sun.

Available colors: charcoal, black, red, teal blue, rose

Price: ~$15.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

17. Knit Blend Vegan Hat

Knit Blend Vegan Hat

This cap is made with a vegan-friendly stretch fabric blend that’s made with acrylic, polyester, and cocona coconut fiber.

Available colors: black, red, gray, light olive

Price: ~$19.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

18. Double Layer Knit Slouchy Hat

Double Layer Knit Slouchy Hat

For those cold days, check out this slouch hat made with a double layer of acrylic knit and fleece. It’s also windproof.

Available colors: black, gray

Price: ~$11.89 – $17.89

Buy Now on Amazon

14 Beautiful Vertical Gardens + Resources to Grow Your Own

Is there hope for those of use who dwell in the concrete jungle or simply crave a little more green? Yes! One answer is to plant a vertical garden – either indoors, outdoors, or both. Below are some images of spectacular vertical gardens around the world. Then, you’ll find some resources on how to grow your own. Be sure to follow the innovative Instagrammers and YouTubers featured in this post who are making the world a more beautiful and greener place!

 

Outdoor Vertical Gardens

1. Outdoor Vertical Garden at the CaixaForum Art Gallery in Madrid, Spain

Outdoor Vertical Garden at the CaixaForum Art Gallery, Madrid, Spain. Photo: Zarateman.
Photo: Zarateman.

 

2. Vertical Garden at Palacio Europa in Basque Country, Spain

Palacio Europa Wall Garden in Basque Country in Spain
Photo: Basotxerri.

 

3. The Ecological Solar House on Saint Helen’s Island, Montreal, Canada

Vertical Garden, Ecological Solar House
Photo: Benoit Rochon.

 

4. The Cloud Forest Dome in Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

The Cloud Forest Dome, Gardens by the Bay, Singapore
Photo: Shiny Things.

 

5. Green Walls and Roofs, Cité des Étoiles in Givors, France

 

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Plántica (@plantica.ciudadesvivas) on

 

6. Vertical Skyscraper Gardens, Beijing,China

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Mo Helmi (@mohelmi) on

 

7. Bukit Panjang, Singapore

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Aerial | Drone | Photography (@i.ride.to.drone) on

 

Indoor Vertical Gardens

8. Green Wall at the Gothal Wellness Center in Liptovská Osada, Slovakia

Vertical Garden in Gothal Wellness Center, Liptovská Osada, Slovakia
Photo: Salman Diweny.

 

9. Vertical Plants in Kew Gardens in London

Vertical Plants, Kew Gardens, London
Photo: Matěj Baťha.

 

10. Indoor Wall Garden by Lídia Castañon

 

11. Vertical Staircase Garden by Panama Luxury Gardens

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by luxury gardens🍃🌿 (@panamaluxurygardens) on

 

12. Florafelt Vertical Garden by Terragarden, Kuwait

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Plants On Walls (@plantsonwalls) on

 

13. Florafelt Vertical Garden, San Francicso, California

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Plants On Walls (@plantsonwalls) on

 

14. Vertical Garden Installation, Toronto Canada

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Plants On Walls (@plantsonwalls) on

 

Does it look complicated? It doesn’t have to be! Here are some resources for growing your own vertical garden.

Plants that Grow Well on Walls

Here’s a list of plants that grow easily on vertical surfaces.

Air Plants

Air Plants 

 

Begonias

Begonias

 

Bromeliads

Bromeliads

 

Ferns

Ferns

 

Baby Tears

Helxine

 

Hosta Plants

Hosta Plant

 

Hoya Plants

Hoya

 

Ivy Geraniums

Ivy Geranium

 

Japanese Iris

Japanese Iris

 

Lipstick Plant

Lipstick Plant

 

Bougainvilla

Bougainvilla

 

Orchids

Orchids

 

Succulents

Succulents

 

Vines

Passion Vine

 

 

How-To Guides for Vertical Gardening on YouTube

Here are a few of my favorite YouTube tutorials for planting a vertical garden.

Vertical Gardens by Whites

 

Simple Ideas for a Vertical Vegetable Garden by Grow Veg

 

Birds Of Prey Vertical Garden by Plants on Walls

 

Vertical Gardening Planters and Kits

Here are a few of the top-rated vertical garden kits on Amazon:

My Easy Grow Self-Watering Wall Garden Kit

My Easy Grow Self-Watering Wall Garden Kit

Price: ~$329.99

 

Worth Self-Watering Vertical Garden Planters

Worth Self-Watering Wall Garden Planters

Here’s a video from Worth about their planters:

 

Florafelt 4-Pocket Vertical Planter

Florafelt 4-pocket Vertical Garden Planter

Price: ~$89.00

Have fun!

11 Top Rated Vegan Condom Brands

Vegan Condom Brands

Have you ever wondered, “Are condoms vegan?” Well, the answer is – it depends. The main ingredient that makes some condoms not vegan is casein, which is the key protein found in milk. Casein is commonly used in the production of latex (which many condoms are made of) to give it a smooth texture. The good news is, today, there are a few options for condoms that are not made with casein (and are still smooth), which I’ll provide details for below. But first…

 

A Few Words About Your Safety

I’m all for taking risks. That is, not stupid ones. And when it comes to your health, please don’t take any stupid risks. You come into this world with one body. You don’t get a spare. It’s the only one you’ve got – this body that will automatically do everything it can to get you through life. Your body is hardwired to heal, to keep you safe, to keep you strong – if you just take care of it. Your body keeps on going, even when you think mean things about it, like you don’t like parts of it. It puts up with all of your negative thoughts, and it keeps performing to the best of its abilities. Please take care of your body, and this means practicing safe sex.

Anyone who might expect you to take risks with your health is not someone you should be hanging out with anyway, especially having sex with. Anyone who would ask you to not practice safe sex is someone you should avoid. That is a selfish and foolish person. Don’t waste your time on selfish and foolish people. Especially because there are so many cool and wonderful people in the world who are for more deserving of your precious time and energy.

Ok. There’s my lecture for the day. Now, on to the vegan rubbers!

Vintage Couple Kissing

 

What are condoms made of?

Traditionally, condoms were made from the intestinal membranes of lambs (not vegan!) This dates back to the start of the Roman Empire (753 BC.) It’s important to note that lamb “skin” condoms do not protect you from STDs, including HIV. Also, no big surprise here, lambskin condoms supposedly smell gross.

Rubber Trees
Rubber Trees.

 

What’s in latex condoms?

Another common material used for condoms is latex, which originally comes from natural rubber trees. Modern latex is made with some synthetic processes, so it’s more rubber-like than what you’d consider to be 100% natural rubber, like the natural rubber used in some of the flip flops and vegan shoes I present on UniGuide.

Other materials that are used to make condoms today include polyurethane, which is a plastic compound, and polyisoprene, which is a totally synthetic, “non-latex” latex that doesn’t contain the allergens found in standard latex. I’ll get into more details on these below.

 

Pros and Cons of Latex Condoms

Latex condoms are effective at preventing pregnancy, as well as STDs, including HIV.

One of the downsides to latex condoms is that some people (six percent of the population) have an allergy to latex, while others simply find it to be irritating to their skin.

It’s also important to note that latex condoms should not be used with oil-based lubricants, like petroleum jelly, vegetable oils, coconut oil, or butter (and that includes dairy butter as well as vegan butter, which could have vegetable oil and/or nut oils in it.) All of these can damage the latex, thus reducing its protective qualities.

You can, however, use latex condoms with water-based lubricants.

Also, latex condoms do expire, so be sure to check the expiration date on the package.

Gay Couple Smooching

 

Are latex condoms vegan?

The short answer is, some latex condoms are vegan, and some are not. Non-vegan latex condoms contain casein, as mentioned above, the main protein found in milk.

Vegan latex condoms, on the other hand, utilize plantbased ingredients, such as thistle extract, which serves a similar purpose of making the latex smooth in the manufacturing process.

 

Polyurethane Condoms

Polyurethane condoms are made with plastic, and they’re also effective at preventing pregnancy and protecting you from STDs, including HIV. The pros of polyurethane condoms are that people with latex allergies can use them, and many people (men and women) say they feel better than latex condoms because they’re very thin.

The downsides to polyurethane condoms are that they can be more expensive than latex condoms, and they’re also less elastic than latex. Though the thinness of the material makes these condoms popular.

Like polyurethane boots, polyurethane condoms are free of animal products.

Couple kissing
Photo: Virginia National Guard.

 

Polyisoprene Condoms

Polyisoprene is a refined, synthetic form of latex that does not contain the allergens that standard latex does. Polyisoprene condoms are also effective at preventing pregnancy and the transmission of STDs, including HIV.

Polyisoprene condoms are considered vegan. Though, as with latex condoms, you should not use oil-based lubricants with them. You can use water- or silicone-based lubricants with these types of condoms.

 

What are vegan condoms made of?

So, essentially, vegan condoms are those that are not made with lamb or pig intestines, or any other kind of animal skin (obviously). And, vegan condoms can be latex, providing the latex is the kinds that does not contain casein. As well, vegan condoms can be made with polyurethane or polyisoprene.

So, without further ado, here are the top-rated vegan condoms:

 

1. Glyde Ethical, Fair Trade Vegan Condoms

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Glyde Ethical, Fair Trade Vegan Condoms

Glyde’s mission is to revolutionize sexual health and wellness. They source the materials for their line of personal care products from worker-owned and operated producers who utilize Fair Trade labor practices and provide equal pay to men and women.

The natural rubber used in their condoms is grown sustainably and is indigenous to the region where it grows. Glyde also focuses on keeping their carbon footprint low, and their packaging is made with recycled materials and vegetable-based inks.

The company is rich in notable certifications, including The Vegan Society, PETA’s Caring Consumer Program, and the Green Business Network. Plus, they’re a certified B Corporation.

Glyde’s condoms are completely free of casein, glycerin, parabens, petrochemicals, and the spermicide Nonoxynol-9.

Price: $7.99 – $79.50

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. L. Vegan Condoms

L. Vegan Condoms

L. is a socially conscious personal care products company that was founded by photojournalist Talia Frenkel, who worked for the Red Cross and United Nations. While working abroad, Talia witnessed many humanitarian crises, including women’s lack of reproductive rights and the impact that HIV/AIDS were having on local communities. She was motivated to do something about it.

Today, L. works with a network of more than 3,000 female entrepreneurs who are making health care products accessible to girls and women who need them.

All of L.’s personal care products are organic and they’re free of pesticides, chlorine, fragrances, and dyes.

L.’s vegan condoms get rave reviews from male and female users alike.

Price: $15.00 – $22.52

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. SKYN Non-Latex Polyisoprene Condoms

SKYN Non-Latex Polyisoprene Condoms

SKYN, by LifeStyles, provides a few different types polyisoprene condoms that are vegan and latex-free. They produce their polyisoprene condoms at a facility that is completely separate from any facility that makes natural rubber latex. So, if you have an allergy to latex, these condoms are a great option.

Price: ~$6.17 – $30.44

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Trojan Supra BareSkin Non-Latex Polyurethane Condoms

Trojan Supra BareSkin Non-Latex Polyurethane Condoms

Trojan’s Supra BareSkin condoms are ultra-thin and made with vegan polyurethane. They’re designed to transmit natural body heat, which users rave about. Made with clear, odor-free, medical-grade polyurethane, these condoms are super thin but still strong.

Price: ~$6.85 – $37.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. B Condoms

 B Vegan CondomsA 100% vegan condom brand, B condoms are also free of glycerin, parabens, spermicides, and petrochemicals.

Price: ~$9.00 – $18.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

6. Royal Ultra-Thin, Organic, and Cruelty-Free Condoms

Royal Ultra-Thin, Organic, and Cruelty-Free CondomsRoyal makes 100% non-toxic, pesticide-free, vegan latex condoms. They’re also FDA Approved.

Price: ~$4.99 – $19.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Sustain Natural, Fair Trade, Ethically-Produced Condoms

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Sustain Natural Fair Trade, Ethically-Produced Condoms

Sustain Natural is another socially conscious brand that’s working to improve women’s health. They donate 10% of their profits to support women’s health organizations in the U.S.

All of their condoms are 100% vegan and free of harmful chemicals, parabens, and synthetic fragrances. They’re also FDA Approved, Fair Trade, and sustainably produced.

Price: ~$4.99 – $19.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Durex Avanti Polyisoprene Condoms

Durex Avanti Polyisoprene Condoms

Durex’s Avanti line of condoms is made with ultra-thin vegan polyisoprene. These condoms get top reviews from users who say they’re a great alternative to latex.

Price: ~$9.46

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Pasante Unique Non-Latex Condoms

Pasante Unique Non-Latex CondomsPasante’s Unique lines of condoms is also vegan and latex-free.

Price: ~$9.46

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Kimono Casein-Free Latex Condoms

Kimono Casein-Free Latex Condoms

Kimono’s MicroThin® line of condoms are made with vegan-friendly, casein-free latex. They’re also from free of spermicides, parabens, glycerin, and nitrosamines (which are carcinogenic compounds.)

Price: ~$11.71 – $31.97

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Fair Squared Vegan Condoms

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Fair Squared Vegan Condoms

Vegan Society-approved Fair Squared condoms are made with natural, casein-free latex. Made in Germany, these condoms are also manufactured with Fair Trade-sourced natural rubber in a carbon neutral production process.

Price: ~$15.58

Buy Now on Amazon

Have fun!

Flirtation

20 Beautiful Hummingbird Pictures You Must See

Beautiful Hummingbirds

These beautiful hummingbird pictures will hopefully inspire you to do what you can to help protect these sublime little birds. Weighing in at just 4 grams (which is less than the weight of two pennies), these tiny birds beat their wings 80 times every second. And their hearts beat, on average, 1,260 beat per minute! (Farmer’s Almanac)

 

Threats to Hummingbirds

As is happening to bird species worldwide, hummingbirds are under threat for a number of human-caused reasons, so it’s up to us to do what we can to help them. According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a global source of conservation information for animals, fungi, and plant species, hummingbirds are threatened for reasons that include:

  • Loss of habitat
  • Pesticide use
  • Changing temperatures from climate change, which disrupt their migratory patterns
  • Invasive, non-native plants that prevent native plants from growing, which hummingbirds rely on for nectar
  • Domestic and feral cats

Today, 37 species, which is 10 percent of all hummingbird species, are threatened with extinction, according to Defenders of Wildlife. At the end of this post, you’ll find additional resources on what you can do to help hummingbirds.

 

Beautiful Hummingbird Photos

Here are a few of my favorite hummingbird photos from Instagram. Be sure to follow the generous photographers who shared these lovely photos!

1.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by 🌴DREAM LIFE COSTA RICA🌴 (@dream.life.costa.rica) on

 

2.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Leonardo Hall R. (@leonardo_hall_r_photo) on

 

3.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by lulu (@hachidori2006) on

 

4.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Andres Delgado (@tatan.delgado) on

 

5.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by CareyJo Titus (@wildatheartphotography) on

 

6.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Laura (@myhummingbirdheaven) on

 

7.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Adam Rainoff Photographer (@arainoffphoto) on

 

8.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Nicolas Murillo (@nicolas_murillo_r) on

 

9.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Birds (@birds_photos_insta) on

 

10.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Dorian Anderson (@dorian_anderson_photography) on

 

11.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Vikki’s Hummingbirds (@newportbeachtweet) on

 

12.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by The Magic Birding Circuit (@magic.birding) on

 

13.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Laura (@myhummingbirdheaven) on

 

14.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Sofía García H (@sofiagah) on

 

15.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Forest Fory Graham (@forygraham1) on

 

16.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Regiane Ferreira (@regianeferreira_photo) on

 

17.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Ty (@fawlingfeatherz) on

 

18.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Ignacio Yúfera (@ignacio_yufera) on

 

19.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by kevin (@km_walsh) on

 

20.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Bieds (@birds_world_ig) on

 

Hummingbird Resources

Hummingbird Society

Audubon Society

American Bird Conservancy

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Operation Ruby Throat

The Hummingbird Monitoring Network

15 Awesome Recycled Wallet Brands

Recycled and Upcycled Wallet Brands
One person’s trash may be another’s treasure, but these brands making awesome recycled wallets are helping to get more of us over to the “treasure” side of things.

Like your cell phone, your wallet is something you have with you all the time, and thus you put it on display on a daily basis. A recycled wallet is a great conversation starter and it shows you care about reducing waste in the environment. I also happen to believe that recycled wallets are superb symbols of ingenuity and resourcefulness, which are key drivers in prosperity.

Here are some awesome eco-friendly wallets from innovative brands that are doing their part to keep trash out of our landfills and waterways.

 

1. Recycled Firefighter Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

1. Recycled Firefighter Wallets

Former firefighter Jake Starr repurposes decommissioned fire hoses and other firefighter gear and turns it into sturdy firefighter wallets. To date, Recycled Firefighter has reclaimed over 15,000 feet of decommissioned fire hose from around the U.S.

Recycled Firefighter Wallets - Olive Green

Here’s a video about Recycled Firefighter’s cool wallets:

Price: ~$19.00 – $49.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Recycled Wallets by Upcycling by Milo

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Recycled Wallets by Upcycling by MiloUpcycling by Milo creates high-quality, one-of-a-kind upcycled wallets, handbags, and other accessories out a wide range of reclaimed materials, including vintage maps, comic books, cassette tapes, vinyl records, and more. You can see some of their cute iPad Mini cases on UniGuide.Recycled Coin Purse by Upcycling by MiloPrice: ~$14.90 – $45.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. Couch Upcycled Vintage Auto Upholstery Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Couch Upcycled Vintage Auto Upholstery Wallets

Couch creates hip vegan guitar straps, wallets, and other accessories from vintage automotive vinyl and upholstery in their studio in Long Beach, CA. Every item is one-of-a-kind, like the orange ladies’ wallet you see here, which is made with vintage upholstery material, and the green wallet, which is made from vintage Chevy Camaro upholstery.

Couch Upcycled Vintage Chevy Camaro Wallets

Price: ~$14.40 – $43.20

Buy on Etsy

 

4. Tinkan Designs Upcycled Can Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tinkan Designs Upcycled Can WalletsTinkan Designs handmakes their unique upcycled wallets using recycled cardboard, aluminum and tin cans, and other post-consumer waste. They don’t use any glues; their wallets are put together using stud rivets and stainless-steel washers. The wallets make a satisfying crinkling noise when you open and close them. But never fear, they don’t have any sharp edges.

Price: ~$13.40 – $18.76

Buy on Etsy

 

5. OffChutes Slim-fold Wallets Made from Reclaimed Parachutes

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

OffChutes Slim-fold Wallets Made from Reclaimed ParachutesIf you’re looking for an ultra-lightweight slim wallet, you can’t go wrong with these colorful designs by OffChutes. Made with reclaimed parachutes and paraglider sails, these wallets are comfortable to carry in your back pocket, plus they’re durable and machine washable.

Price: ~$25.00 – $45.00

Buy on Etsy

 

6. Flowfold Slim Wallets Made with Upcycled Sail Cloth

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Flowfold Slim Wallets Made with Upcycled Sail ClothBased in Portland, Maine, Flowfold creates what they call “minimalist gear for everyday adventures.” Their one-of-a-kind wallets are made from durable used sail cloth. Plus, they’re all handmade in the USA.

Flowfold Red Slim Wallet Made with Upcycled Sail Cloth

Here’s a video from Flowfold about their wallets:

Price: ~$11.95 – $34.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Squiggle Chick Recycled Wallets and Passport Cases

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Squiggle Chick Recycled Wallets and Passport Cases

Squiggle Chick founder Tracy Borders was on a sailing trip in Croatia when she and her husband discovered Croatian potato chips. An artist, Tracy liked the colorful bags the chips came in, so she decided to keep some as souvenirs. She also thought the bags might be used for something useful instead of being thrown away, so she began to experiment. Today, her creations have expanded from potato chip bags to other trash, which she converts into colorful wallets, passport cases, luggage tags, and other accessories.

Price: ~$18.00 – $30.00

Buy on Etsy

 

8. Green Guru Tire Wallets and Zip Pouches

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Green Guru Tire Wallets and Zip PouchesAs outdoor enthusiasts, the founders of Green Guru Gear had issues with the amount of waste created by the outdoor industry. So, they set out to solve the problem. Today, the company make a range of accessories and gear from scraps and other waste salvaged from organizations like REI, Patagonia, and Outward Bound.

Green Guru Zip Pouch

Here’s a video with founder Davidson Lewis talking about Green Guru’s mission:

Price: ~$11.17 – $17.17

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Tube Bags Thailand Fair Trade Inner Tube Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Tube Bags Thailand Fair Trade Inner Tube Wallets

If you’re looking for a longer, zip wallet, check out this style from Tube Bags Thailand. Created by artisans living in rural Thailand, these wallets are made with upcycled tire inner tubes and they’re practically waterproof. Tube Bags Thailand makes other recycled accessories, including recycled tire purses and laptop sleeves, which are featured here on UnGuide.

Price: ~$16.35 – $31.65

Buy on Etsy

 

10. Alchemy Goods Recycled Tire Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Alchemy Goods Recycled Tire WalletsAlchemy Goods is another innovative brand that upcycles used bicycle inner tubes and converts them into durable wallets and other accessories, such as rugged laptop cases and iPad sleeves. To date, the company has kept over 500,000 bicycle inner tubes out of landfills. All of Alchemy Goods’ products are handmade in their workshop in Seattle, WA.

Alchemy Goods Recycled Slim WalletPrice: ~$20.00 – $44.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. WozWaste Recycled Zip Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

WozWaste Recycled Zip Wallets

If you carry a lot of stuff in your wallet, and you need multiple card slots and a coin pocket, check out these long zip wallets from WozWaste. Multiple compartments and a full zip enclosure will keep the contents organized and secure.

WozWaste Recycled Zip Wallets

Price: ~$18.60 – $52.08

Buy on Etsy

 

12. Moab Bag Company Bike Inner Tube Zip Cases

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Moab Bag Company Bike Innertube Zip Cases

If you like the flexibility and utility of a simple zip bag, check out these inner tube bags from Moab Bag Company. With sturdy zippers and wrist straps, they can be used a wallet, travel case, makeup bag, small tool bag, and more. Moab offers a variety of bag sizes plus some cool slim-fold wallets.

Price: ~$14.00 – $40.00

Buy on Etsy

 

13. Haiku Recycled Plastic Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Haiku Recycled Plastic Wallets

Haiku makes a variety of cute wallets and handbags that are made from 100% recycled P.E.T. plastic bottles. Every Haiku bag keeps at least five plastic bottles out of the landfill or from polluting our oceans.

Haiku Recycled Plastic Wallet Navy Blue

Price: ~$7.95 – $38.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. Reborn Bag Recycled Cement Bag Wallet

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Reborn Bag Recycled Cement Bag WalletAptly named Reborn Bags makes unique wallets and other accessories out of reclaimed cement, rice, and fish bags.

Price: ~$15.00 – $22.00

Buy on Etsy

 

15. Recycled Cereal Boxes and Wrapping Paper Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Recycled Cereal Boxes and Wrapping Paper Wallets

Pichuskadass founder Helena says she loves the challenge of taking existing items and turning them into something new. And she says she has a natural passion for reusing, rethinking, and reinventing trash. Her colorful recycled wallets are made with used cereal boxes that form the base, which Helena then covers with upcycled paper, such a colorful wrapping paper. A laminate coating protects the paper from wear and tear.

Recycled Cereal Boxes and Wrapping Paper Wallet with Bicycles

Price: ~$9.20 – $33.10

Buy on Etsy

To see more cool wallets on UniGuide, check out my post on vegan wallets.

11 Recycled Shoe Brands (That Are Vegan Too)

Recycled Shoes

Recycled shoes used to be hard to find, but now, both new and established brands are coming out with more styles made from recycled materials. P.E.T. plastic, which is the plastic used to make disposable plastic bottles, can be melted down and then spun into fibers, which can then be woven into flexible materials used in shoes, as well as clothing, dog collars, and other products.

The plastic pollution problem is now a global crisis. According to the nonprofit Surfers Against Sewage, in 1950, there were 2.5 billion people in the world consuming 1.5 million tons of plastic annually. Fast-forward to 2016 and the world’s 7 billion people are consuming 320 million tons of plastic. And the horrifying statistic is that this number is set to double by 2034.

The best thing we can do is to avoid using plastic as much as possible. In addition, purchasing goods that are made from recycled plastic helps to keep plastic out of the ocean and landfills. Making the decision to buy from brands that are actively trying to solve the plastic waste problem helps to create a market for recycled plastic over virgin plastic.

Here are some innovative brands that are making cool shoes made from recycled plastic and other recycled materials. If you are looking for flip flops made from recycled materials, you can see those in my Recycled and Vegan Flip Flops Guide.

1. adidas Parley Recycled Plastic Sneakers

adidas Parley recycled Shoes

adidas and Parley for the Oceans have created a successful collaboration that’s helping to keep plastic out of the ocean. About 80% of the debris that pollutes our oceans is plastic, which kills marine life. Parley intercepts coastal plastic waste before it gets into the ocean. Then, they convert the reclaimed plastic into threads, which adidas uses to make recycled shoes and active wear You can see adidas Parley flip flops in my recycled flip flops post.

Price: ~$64.95 – $164.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Indosole Recycled Tire Shoes

Indosole Vegan Shoes for WomenStarted by surfer Kyle Parsons, San Francisco and Bali-based Indosole repurposes discarded tires and uses them in the soles of their vegan footwear line. Billions of used tires are discarded every year, which pollute waterways and other natural habitats.

Indosole is a certified B Corporation, which means it’s a for-profit company that’s certified by the nonprofit B Lab for maintaining rigorous social and environmental standards.

Here’s a video about Indosole’s production process in Bali:

You can see flip flops by Indosole in my recycled flip flops guide.

Price: ~$21.00 – $54.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. Nike Flyknit Recycled Running Shoes

Nike Flyknit Recycled Running ShoesNike’s Flyknit material reduces production waste and helps to keep plastic bottles out of the ocean and landfill. They developed their flexible Flyknit material at the request of runners who wanted a shoe that fit like a sock.

Price: ~$56.56 – $94.45

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Saolo Recycled and Vegan Shoes

Saolo Vegan Recycled ShoesSaolo makes cool street wear style shoes out of recycled materials, organic cotton, and harvested algae. Their recycled shoes are comfortable and lightweight, plus they’re cushioned with sustainable cork insoles. Every pair of their shoes keeps 3-4 plastic bottles out of the landfill and ocean. Their shoes are also 100% vegan.

Price: ~$99.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. The North Face Recycled Shoes

Recycled North Face SlippersThe North Face is another major brand that is now incorporating recycled P.E.T. plastic into their shoes and clothing. These puffy camp slippers are lightweight, warm and comfy, perfect for camping trips or after a day or skiing or snowboarding. (For my vegan friends, they do use leather in some of their styles, so be sure to check the product details.)

Price: ~$35.99 – $195.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

6. People’s Movement MOVMT Recycled and Organic Cotton Shoes

People's Movement Recycled Shoes

The People’s Movement (MOVMT) is another socially conscious company that was founded by a surfer who couldn’t stand the amount of pollution he was running into in the ocean.

MOVMT shoes are made from recycled plastic and other eco-friendly materials like organic cotton canvas, and they’re casual and comfortable.

Here’s CEO Kevin Flanagan talking about the mission behind the People’s Movement:

Price: ~$18.00 – $69.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Vivobarefoot Shoes

Vivobarefoot Recycled Shoes
Vivobarefoot is all about going barefoot while still wearing shoes. Their shoes are made with flexible, eco-friendly canvas that’s made from 40% recycled P.E.T. plastic.

Price: ~$80.00 – $210.00

 

8. Etnies Recycled Rubber and Plastic Shoes

Recycled Skate Shoes by Etnies

Etnies creates classic skate shoes with an eco-friendly twist. Their shoes are made with recycled rubber outsoles, and the padded insoles are made with recycled materials too. Taking it a step further, their canvas uppers are made with recycled plastic.

Price: ~$24.95 – $60.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Bhava Socially Conscious Footwear

Bhava Recycled and Vegan Footwear

Bhava is an ethical footwear brand that was started by Francisca Pineda, who wanted to create a new standard in the footwear industry. Bhava’s artisanal shoes 100% vegan and they’re also made with organic and recycled materials.

Price: ~$99.99 – ~$269.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Beyond Skin Fashionable Recycled PU Shoes

Beyond Skin Fashionable Recycled PU ShoesBeyond Skin’s founders set out to make a line of luxury shoes that were also kind to animals. They incorporate recycled polyurethane (PU) vegan leather into their designs. Beyond Skin’s shoes are designed in Brighton, UK and made in Alicante, Spain.

Price: ~$139.99 – $269.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Rothy’s Recycled Plastic Bottle Shoes

Rothy's Recycled Plastic Shoes

To date, Rothy’s has already repurposed 20 million plastic water bottles and recycled them into their popular and stylish flats. With some heavy hitter investors and fans like Meghan Markle, Rothy’s promises to bring recycled and sustainable footwear to the masses. A truly circular company, Rothy’s will recycle old shoes into new styles if you send them back to them.

Price: ~$125.00 – $165.00

See more recycled shoes in:

UniGuide’s Recycled and Vegan Flip Flops Guide

17 Vegan Wallet Brands to Hold Your Compassionate Currency

Vegan Wallet Brands

Vegan wallet brands are hitting their stride, with innovative designers now offering a variety of styles in fun, cruelty-free materials like faux leather, cork, and even upcycled tires. Indeed, all these new designs make it hard to choose. But whichever style you do select, it will feel good to know you supported a compassionate brand that’s helping to lessen suffering in the world, while keeping your money secure.

According to PETA, every year, well over one billion animals are killed globally for their skin. If you think about it, your wallet is an accessory that you have with you every day. It gets a lot of exposure and, like it not, your wallet makes a statement about you. So, if someone says, “Cute wallet!” You can say, “Well, thank you very much. No animals were harmed in its creation.”

Here are some innovative brands making stylish vegan wallets:

1. Mohop Vegan Wallets

Mohop Vegan WalletsMade with iridescent faux leather, these slim-fold vegan wallets are definite showstoppers.

Mohop Vegan WalletsPrice: ~$19.00 – $39.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. LaBante London Vegan Leather Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

LaBante London Vegan Leather WalletsKnown for their vegan leather handbags, LaBante London also makes super stylish vegan wallets. A socially conscious brand, they donate 10% of their profits to charitable causes. LaBante London’s vegan wallets are also eco-friendly, as the faux leather is made with recycled plastic bottles.

Price: ~$55.00 – $69.90

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. MATT & NAT Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

MATT & NAT Vegan WalletsFamous for their luxury line of vegan handbags, MATT & NAT also makes chic wallets in vegan leather. Plus, they infuse environmentally-friendly principles into their designs by using natural, plantbased, and recycled materials as much as possible.

Price: ~52.99 – $85.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Stella McCartney Luxury Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Stella McCartney Luxury Vegan WalletsTo go with her line of delicious, luxury handbags, vegan trailblazer Stella McCartney makes some lovely cruelty-free wallets in bold colors. And some have a little bit of sparkle, which never goes out of style.

Price: ~$20.88 – $471.24

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Maniwala Piñatex Pineapple Leather Wallet

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Maniwala Piñatex Pineapple Leather Card WalletPiñatex pineapple leather is one of the most exciting sustainable materials we’ve seen in recent years. Developed by Dr. Carmen Hijosa, a former consultant to the leather industry who knew the industry needed some disruption, Piñatex is one of those materials that stands to transform the shoe and accessories market. Maniwala makes sleek vegan wallets and other accessories, such as vegan laptop cases, out of this innovative, Earth-friendly material.

Price: ~$90.00 – $120.00

Buy on Etsy

 

6. Wonder Women of the World Pineapple Leather Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Wonder Women of the World Pineapple Leather WalletIf you like a little more bling in your vegan wallet, you can’t go wrong with this sleek card case made with Piñatex. Women of the World makes ethical accessories in their workshop in Paris, France. They empower women who need jobs by providing them with skills and job training to help get them back on their feet.

Price: ~$16.47 – $41.17

Buy on Etsy

 

7. Alchemy Goods Recycled Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Alchemy Goods Recycled Vegan WalletsAlchemy Goods upcycles used bicycle inner tubes and turns them into super hip and sustainable wallets and other accessories. To date, they’ve kept over 500,000 bicycle inner tubes out landfills and waterways. Alchemy Goods’ vegan wallets are hand made in their workshop in Seattle, Washington. They also make cool vegan laptop sleeves and iPad cases.

Price: ~$20.00 – $44.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Upcycling by Milo Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

 Upcycling by Milo Vegan WalletsUpcycling by Milo creates truly unique and colorful vegan wallets, iPad Mini cases, and other accessories from upcycled materials. Their cute vegan wallets and bags are made from candy wrappers, measuring tapes, vinyl records, and more.

Price: ~$14.90 – $45.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Corkor Sustainable Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Corkor Sustainable Vegan WalletsCorkor makes their sleek vegan wallets and other accessories with natural, sustainable cork. Cork is a 100% renewable, recyclable, and biodegradable material. Plus, it’s obtained through an Earth-friendly harvesting process. When cork bark is harvested, it doesn’t harm the tree. In addition, the tree is then able to absorb even more CO2 from the environment.

Price: ~$9.90 – $64.50

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. The Eco Owl Cork Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

The Eco Owl Cork Wallets

The Eco Owl is another nature-inspired brand that makes beautiful, sustainable vegan wallets with eco-friendly cork.

Price: ~$15.99 – $24.99

Buy on Etsy

 

11. Trade in House Vegan Cork Leather Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Trade in House Vegan Cork Leather Wallets

Trade in House’s vegan wallets are handmade in Portugal, home to the world’s largest cork forests. The also make some gorgeous eco-friendly cork shoes and cool phone cases.

Price: ~$29.00 – $77.00

Buy on Etsy

 

12. Couch Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Couch Vegan WalletsFamous for their uber cool vegan guitar straps, Couch also makes some sweet vegan wallets out of upcycled vintage auto upholstery and other recycled materials. Each item is one-of-a-kind, so if you find one you fancy, don’t wait to get it!

Price: ~$14.40 – $43.20

Buy on Etsy

 

13. Green Banana Paper Sustainable Vegan Wallet

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Green Banana Paper Sustainable Vegan WalletBased in Micronesia, Green Banana Paper creates artisanal vegan wallets out of natural banana tree leaves. When you buy one of their wallets, you help support over 100 families in their small island community. These vegan wallets are made by expert craftspeople who work side-by-side to create each unique piece.

Price: ~$29.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. Tree Tribe Natural Leaf Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Bran

Tree Tribe Leaf WalletsOutdoor lifestyle brand Tree Tribe creates these cool vegan wallets out of natural and sustainable teak tree leaves, which they source in Thailand. The leaves are treated with a thin laminate, which seals and preserves the leaves and makes the wallets water-resistant and tear-proof. Each vegan wallet is handmade and unique. True to their name, this socially conscious enterprise plants 10 trees for every product they sell. You can see their cool wooden sunglasses here on UniGuide.

Price: ~$24.71 – $38.42

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Faux Leather Wallets by The Vegan Collection

Faux Leather Wallets by The Vegan CollectionThere’s no mistaking what you’re getting when you buy a wallet from The Vegan Collection. Made with animal-friendly microfiber, the Vegan Collection’s wallets are slim, with a minimalist design.

Price: ~$27.00 – $30.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

16. Hempy’s Vegan Wallets

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Hempy’s Vegan Wallets

Possibly the original vegan wallet, hemp wallets aren’t just for Dead Heads anymore. Like denim, hemp gets better with age, breaking in nicely while still maintaining its durability. Hemp wallets are comfortable and flexible, making them perfect for your back pocket. Hempy’s vegan wallets come in natural Earth tones.

Price: ~$16.00 – $24.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

17. Lavishy Vegan Wallets

Lavishy Vegan WalletsA PETA-approved brand, Lavishy makes some of the cutest vegan wallets around. If you love animals and flowers (that’s all of us, right??), you’ll be sure to love Lavishy’s collection.

Price: ~$28.99 – $37.50

Buy Now on Amazon

 

A massage therapist once told me that “money is just a crystallized form of energy.” How you make your money and how you spend it impacts not just your bank account but other people, animals, nature, and our world. Your money is a manifestation of the energy you put into the world. Keeping it in a cruelty-free case just makes sense, doesn’t it?

Here’s to your health, happiness, and prosperity!

27 Best 100% Vegan Shoe Brands for 2019

Best Shoe Brands Are Vegan

There are a number of great shoe brands that offer some styles that are vegan, but too many include other shoes in their lineups that are made with animal skin, and in some cases, wool. (If you’ve ever seen how wool is taken from sheep on an industrial scale, you know it’s definitely not cruelty-free.) So, for this post, I wanted to give a special shout out to the best 100% vegan shoe brands.

With cruelty-free options now available for so many items, why buy anything else? And luckily for us, today there are some vegan designers who are knocking it out of the park, especially in the world of footwear, where there has been serious need for an ethical overhaul.

While we animal lovers welcome shoe brands with open arms when they start offering cruelty-free styles, I think it’s fair to put the brands that only make vegan shoes up on a pedestal, don’t you? After all, they’re walking the talk and talking the walk – demonstrating that animals do not have to suffer – and should not suffer – for whatever humans decide to put on our feet. And the good news is, today vegan shoes are not a sacrifice, whether it’s in style, durability, breathability, price, or anything else. Vegan shoes are a win win!

So, in no particular order, here are the best 100% vegan shoes brands. (And if I’m missing any here, feel free to send a nasty message to kristen at uniguide dot biz. Someday, when I have more time to manage them, I’ll set up comments on UniGuide, I promise.)

1. Will’s Vegan Shoes

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
Will’s Vegan Shoes for Women

Will's Vegan Shoes for WomenWill’s Vegan Shoes makes 100% vegan shoes and boots that are also ethically made and environmentally sustainable.

All of Will’s vegan shoes are made in Portugal and Italy, where their workers are protected by EU health, safety, anti-discrimination, and other employment protection laws. Workers also get benefits such PTO, equal pay, and maternity leave.

Will’s shoes are also sustainably made. The faux leather and other materials used in their shoes meet the OEKO-TEX® textile standard, which ensures that textiles and the materials used in them meet strict consumer safety guidelines.

In addition, Will’s utilizes a carbon-neutral supply chain, and their operations are carbon neutral. Will’s invests in renewable energy projects like wind power, hydro power, geothermal, solar power, and biomass. Plus, when you order a pair of Will’s shoes, you’ll receive them in sustainable, eco-friendly, and recyclable packaging.

Will’s Vegan Shoes for Men

Will's Vegan Shoes for MenPrice: ~$112.00 – $156.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Ahimsa

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
Ahimsa Vegan Shoes for Women

Ahimsa Vegan Shoes for Women
I’ve written about Ahimsa in other posts on UniGuide, including posts for men’s boots and shoes, because I’m such a fan of this company’s philosophy and what they want to accomplish.

A truly mission-driven venture, Ahimsa is a Brazilian artisanal footwear brand that is out to make more than just high-quality vegan shoes. They say their mission is to create “a more conscious society, one day completely free of cruelty.” Lord knows we need more companies like this.

Ahimsa makes all of their shoes in their own workshop, so they can make sure their workers earn a living wage and are treated well. They also put a special emphasis on using eco-friendly materials in their shoes.

Ahimsa Vegan Shoes for Men

Ahimsa Vegan Shoes for MenPrice: ~$129.00 – $170.00
Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. MATT & NAT Vegan Shoes

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

MATT & NAT Vegan ShoesMATT & NAT first became well-known for their luxury vegan handbags, and recently they started to introduce fashionable vegan shoes to their collection. The name MATT & NAT is derived from “materials” and “nature.” Started in Montreal in 1995, the MATT & NAT team set out to enhance the “humanity, creativity and positivity found in all of us.”

Totally cruelty-free from their beginning, MATT & NAT also puts an emphasis on using natural, plantbased, and recycled materials in their designs. Natural materials include cork and natural rubber; and recycled materials include recycled nylon and recycled rubber.

Price: ~$95.00 – $150.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

4. Native Shoes

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
Native Shoes for Women

Native Vegan Shoes for Women

Another 100% vegan footwear company, Native works to maintain a light environmental footprint during their production process. They use a low-emission manufacturing process, and their shoes are made with a foam-injection molding process that minimizes waste.

Native Shoes for Men
Native Vegan Shoes for Men

Price: ~$12.00 – $42.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Bourgeois Boheme

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
Bourgeois Boheme Vegan Shoes for Women

Bourgeois Boheme Vegan Shoes for WomenBourgeois Boheme makes fashionable cruelty-free shoes for women and men with eco-friendly materials like Piñatex™ pineapple leather, PVC-free faux leather, and vegan microfiber. In addition, they use plant-based polymers that are derived from natural and renewable sources, including grains and seeds vs. petrochemicals.

Bourgeois Boheme Vegan Shoes for Men
Bourgeois Boheme Vegan Shoes for Men

Price: ~$199.00 – $259.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

6. People Footwear

People Vegan Footwear

Based in Vancouver, Canada, People Footwear offers a 100% cruelty-free line of shoes for women, men, and kids. They describe their shoes as “high-performance leisure” as they specialize in lightweight, comfortable designs.

Price: ~$18.00 – $80.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. olsen Haus

olsen Hause Women's Vegan Shoes

Today, it can be a little hard to imagine there was a time when it was difficult to find high fashion vegan shoes. Like Stella McCartney, Elizabeth Olsen has been a change agent in the fashion world, demonstrating that vegan shoes can be uber-stylish, sexy, and high quality. If you’re a vegan lady who likes a little stiletto in your cruelty-free shoes, or you just want a gorgeous pair of shoes for work or a night on the town, definitely check out olsen Haus.

Price: ~$37.00 – $199.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Beyond Skin

Beyond Skin Women's Vegan Shoes

Like olsen Haus, Beyond Skin’s founders were frustrated by the lack of stylish, luxury shoes that were also kind to animals. So, they set out to make compassionate waves in the footwear world. Popular with vegan superstars like Natalie Portman, Beyond Skin’s stylish shoes are designed in Brighton, UK and made in Alicante, Spain.

Price: ~$139.00 – $289.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Bioworld

Bioworld Vegan Shoes

Bioworld makes fun, unique vegan shoes, sandals, and boots in their workshops in Toledo, Spain and Italy.

Price: ~$61.53 – $153.52

Buy on Etsy

 

10. Cri de Coeur

Cri de Coeur Women's Vegan Shoes

Cri de Coeur translates to “cry from the heart,” a perfect name for a compassionate vegan footwear company. Founders Gina Ferraraccio and Julie Dicterow created their line of cruelty-free shoes with a “heartfelt desire to change the face of the fashion footwear and accessory markets by providing stylish, contemporary products that are ethically produced.”

Price: ~$109.99 – $189.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Roni Kantor

Roni Kantor Ladies' Vegan Shoes

Based in Tel Aviv, Israel, Roni Kantor designs lovely, all vegan shoes that are perfect for weddings and other special occasions. Roni’s designs are inspired by her love of vintage fashion, and the materials used are inspired by her love of animals.

Price: ~$99.00 – $130.00

Buy on Etsy

 

12. Unstitched Utilities

Unstitched Utilities for Women

Unstitched Utilities Vegan Shoes for Women Jack Steinweis, Kevin Crowley, and Mark Kane, the founders of Unstitched Utilities, understood that modern day consumers want to buy ethical and eco-friendly shoes, but they don’t want to sacrifice on style when it comes to honoring their values.

Using vegan dyes and glues in their creations, Unstitched Utilities’ shoes are also made with eco-friendly materials. They use a material called Tyvek®, which is a high-density polyethylene fiber that’s water resistant, durable, and breathable. It’s also vegan and can be recycled.

Unstitched Utilities for Men

Unstitched Utilities Vegan Shoes for Men

Price: ~$19.99 – $99.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. Stella McCartney

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Stella McCartney Vegan ShoesStella McCartney was infusing veganism into her designs before vegan was cool. She is a consistent advocate for animal rights and lover of high fashion. This combination of values and passion have brought the world some seriously badass vegan shoes and gorgeous clothes.

Price: ~$32.00 – $675.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. Indosole

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Indosole Vegan Shoes for Women

A certified B corporation, Indosole repurposes discarded tires and uses them in the soles for their laid back vegan shoes. Kyle Parsons, an avid surfer and environmentalist, started Indosole after a surfing trip to Bali, Indonesia. He was shocked by the amount of trash littering the beaches and ocean in what should have been an island paradise.

On this same trip, Kyle happened to need a new pair of sandals and bought some locally. He was intrigued by how the sandals were made: the soles were created from used motorbike tires. This ingenuity and the desire to reduce the amount of waste polluting Bali’s natural environment led Kyle to create a super cool, socially conscious footwear brand that is beloved by surfers, travelers, and others care about the Earth.

Indosole Vegan Shoes for Men

Price: ~$21.99 – $55.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Trade in House

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Trade in House Vegan Shoes

I have been following Trade in House for a few years now, and it’s been inspiring to see their collection of vegan shoes and accessories expand. Handmade in Portugal with sustainable, eco-friendly cork, Trade in House’s collection is both unique and stylish. Be sure to visit their Etsy store to see more styles for men and women.

Sustainable Men’s Vegan Shoes by Trade in HousePrice: ~$40.00 – $165.00

Buy on Etsy

 

16. Free Rangers Vegan Footwear

Free Rangers Vegan Footwear for Women

With their apropos name, Free Rangers makes unique, free style vegan shoes that are both comfortable and stylish. All of their shoes are handmade to order in their workshop in the UK. They’re also 100% cruelty-free. Plus, they come in 19 different colors.

Free Rangers Vegan Footwear for MenPrice: ~$89.00 – $168.00

Buy on Etsy

 

17. Novacas

Novacas Vegan ShoesIf you like the leather look, check out Novacas’ vegan shoes. Their name means “no cows” in Spanish – the perfect name for a vegan footwear company. All of their faux leather designs are made with non-toxic and PVC-free materials. Plus, they’re ethically made in Portugal.

Price: ~$109.99 – $220.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

18. MOVMT

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
MOVMT Shoes for Women

MOVMT Shoes for Women

The People’s Movement, otherwise known as MOVMT, has a clear mission: to reduce the amount of plastic pollution on land and in the ocean by turning it into something useful – in this case, really cool shoes.
The company talks about making “eco-hip” footwear and accessories, but the simplicity of the term “eco-hip” belies the depth of MOVMT’s mission. Eco hip is not just about looking cool. Eco hip stands for where we are in our modern world, when shoes are no longer just shoes; they can a means for solving bigger problems.

MOVMT collects plastic bags in Bali that would otherwise be thrown away and blends them with environmentally-friendly materials to make the fabrics for their shoes. They support the nonprofit 5 Gyres, which also focuses on reducing plastic pollution through oceanic research, community collaboration, and action.

MOVMT shoes are casual and comfortable and come in a variety of colors and styles. In addition to recycled plastic, you’ll find styles in other eco-friendly materials, such as organic cotton canvas.

MOVMT Shoes for Men

MOVMT Shoes for Men

Price: ~$18.00 – $69.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

19. NAE Vegan

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand
NAE Women’s Vegan Shoes

NAE Women's Vegan ShoesNAE stands for “No Animal Exploitation,” which, of course, is another perfect name for an all vegan footwear company. Based in Portugal, NAE’s founding principles are that no animals should be exploited for footwear or other reasons.

NAE also focuses on sustainability, using natural materials like cork and Piñatex pineapple leather in their designs. They also use recycled materials from automotive airbags and PET plastic bottles, as well as plantbased microfibers, in their designs.

NAE Men’s Shoes

NAE Men's Vegan ShoesPrice: ~$115.00 – $169.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

20. Fugu “Cool Japanese Shoes”

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Fugu Vegan Japanese Shoes
Fugu is another all vegan brand that produces truly unique shoes. Self-described as a maker of “cool Japanese shoes,” Fugu’s unisex canvas shoes and boots speak urban Ninja warrior and warrior princess. Made with recycled rubber soles, Fugu’s cool boots have been featured in a few Hollywood movies, including Star Wars and The Hunger Games.

Price: ~$59.99 – $89.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

21. Siam Tip

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

 

Siam Tip Vegan Shoes

Siam Tip’s handmade shoes and boots mix artisanal, handmade design with exotic, ethnic flair. Made by local artisans in Thailand, these all vegan shoes mix tradition with modern, carefree style. They’re colorful, comfortable, and cruelty-free.

Siam Tip Vegan Shoes High Tops

Price: ~$43.00 – $133.99

Buy on Etsy

 

22. BC Footwear

BC Footwear Vegan Shoes and Boots for Women

BC Footwear makes affordable women’s shoes and boots in faux leather and other manmade materials. Whether you’re looking for something casual or dressy, or a great pair of shoes for work, BC Footwear offers a number of vegan styles.

Price: ~$17.00 – $80.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

23. Blowfish Shoes

Blowfish Shoes Women's
Based in sunny Southern California, Blowfish shoes makes cute and comfortable shoes for women in girls in canvas, faux leather, and other manmade materials. They’re also super affordable.

Price: ~$6.00 – $61.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

24. Golden Ponies Vegan Shoes

Golden Ponies Vegan Shoes for Women
Golden Ponies makes cute vegan shoes and accessories in Guadalajara, Mexico. They offer a variety of fun, all vegan shoe styles for women, including iridescent sneakers, sparkly boots, vintage-style t-strap pumps, and cork oxfords. Visit their Etsy store to see them all.

Price: ~$48.00 – $60.00

Buy on Etsy

 

25. Nature Breeze

Nature Breeze Vegan Shoes
Nature Breeze is another brand that offers a wide range of affordable women’s shoes, sandals, and boots in manmade materials. They’re great for anyone on a budget. Whether you’re looking for platform sandals or knee-high stretchy boots, Nature Breeze has you covered.

Price: ~$13.00 – $50.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

26. Rothy’s

Rothys Recycled Vegan Shoes

Made with recycled plastic water bottles, Rothy’s is a shoe brand that is loved by stylish celebs like Meghan Markle and all kinds of women and girls who love chic simplicity and eco-friendly style. The company has already repurposed over 20 million plastic water bottles to create their colorful, slim shoes. And when your Rothy’s wear out, you can send them back to the company to be recycled.

Price: ~$125.00 – $165.00

 

27. Okabashi

Okabashi Shoes Brand

Known for their sandals and flip flops for women and men, Okabashi also makes vegan clogs. Their shoes are all made in the USA and they contain 20% recycled materials. Plus, when you’re done with their shoes, you can mail them back and Okabashi will recycled the materials to make more shoes.

Price: $12.00 – $24.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

 

To see more vegan shoes and boots on UniGuide, check out these shoe guides:

Women’s Vegan Boots Guide

Women’s Vegan Sandals Guide

Men’s Vegan Boots Guide

Men’s Vegan Shoes Guide

Rope Sandals for Men and Women

Vegan Sport Sandals and Athletic Sandals

Recycled, Eco-Friendly, and Vegan Flip Flops

Hemp Shoes and Sandals from Women and Men

17 Best Wooden Sunglasses Brands + Bamboo Sunglasses Too

Wood and Bamboo Sunglasses for Women and Men 2

Wooden sunglasses and bamboo sunglasses make a fashion forward statement in today’s world, and the selection of frame styles and lenses has never been more diverse. I researched a variety of wood-framed and bamboo sunglasses brands and present my faves them here.

People often refer to bamboo as a wood, as in “bamboo wood sunglasses,” because bamboo has the same aesthetic qualities as real wood. However, bamboo is actually a fast-growing grass – it holds the world’s record for the fastest growing plant.

In addition to being Earth-friendly, both wood and bamboo sunglasses are lightweight, so they’re comfortable enough to wear all day long. Not to mention, many styles float, making them the perfect accessory for having fun in the water on a sunny summer day.

Today, you can find real wood sunglasses in cherry wood, maple, pear, and other varieties. And because every tree is different, no two pairs are exactly alike. Some designers are also making sunglasses from reclaimed wood that was previously used for flooring, skateboard decks, and other products.

Aside from the aesthetics, why should you buy sunglasses that are made with wood frames, bamboo, or other sustainable materials?

All over the world, people wear sunglasses. This year, Americans alone will buy 200 million pairs. With our growing plastic pollution crisis, it only makes sense to reduce the amount of virgin plastic we buy. Purchasing sunglasses that use less virgin plastic, or none at all, is the optimal way to go.

Here are some innovative brands making cool sunglasses with wood and bamboo frames:

Wooden Sunglasses

1. Woodies Sunglasses

Wood Framed Sunglasses by Woodies on Four Friends

As the name implies, Woodies is all about wood sunglasses. Their brand has a fun retro vibe, but their materials, including polarized lenses, are all cutting edge. The company is devoted to making petrol-plastic a thing of the past. Woodies offers a broad selection of men’s and women’s frame shapes in an impressive collection of woods, including rose wood, zebra wood, walnut, and more.

Woodies Polarized Wayfarer Sunglasses with Rainbow Arms

Here’s a promo video for Woodies:

Price: $25.00 – $55.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Handmade Real Wood Sunglasses by Paul Ven

Handmade Retro Real Wood Sunglasses by Paul Ven

Designer Paul Ven creates artisanal real wood sunglasses in walnut, ebony, zebra wood, oak, and maple. Paul Ven’s designed are created in London, and their Etsy page claims,

“People (especially in London and probably other big cities) who don’t have these wood sunglasses will express high levels of jealousy towards you. They’re a real head turner. So be noticed, and be cheeky as a fox.”

Real Wood Sunglasses by Paul Ven with Round Frames

Every pair of Paul Vens is unique, and you can make them even more so (if that’s possible) by getting a custom message engraved inside the arm of the sunglasses.

They come with polarized, shatterproof polycarbonate lenses that offer 100% UVA/UVB protection, and ever pair has stainless steel spring hinges. But wait, there’s more: These babies float.

Price: $55.00 – $76.00

Buy on Etsy

 

3. Handmade Wood Frame Sunglasses by Mitchell Made

Handmade Tortoise Shell and Wood Arm Sunglasses by Mitchell Made

Based in Sudbury, Canada, Mitchell Made is another designer that crafts beautiful wood and bamboo sunglasses by hand. Their styles are unique, but with a vintage feel. Mitchell Made ships their sunglasses with a faux leather case.

Aviator Wood Arm Sunglasses by Mitchell Made

Price: $47.00 – $63.00

Buy on Etsy

 

4. Hammockable Sunglasses

Eco-Conscious Sunglasses in Black Maple Wood by Hammockable

Hammockable plants five trees for every pair of sunglasses they sell in partnership with the nonprofit Trees for the Future. The organization helps families transition from destructive farming techniques to a forest garden system that helps sustain them for the long term. Hammockable gets some of the natural maple wood for their sunglasses from unused wood scraps that are left over from the production of skateboards.

Round Wooden Frame Sunglasses by Hammockable

Price: $59.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Customized Wood Sunglasses

Custom Engraved Personalized Wood Sunglasses

If you’ve got a party coming up and want to give your guests a fun, eco-friendly gift, check out the selection of custom wood and bamboo sunglasses offered by Etsy artisans. A number of companies, like My Personal Memories, will engrave names and slogans on the arms of the shades.

Price: $24.99 – $45.00

Buy on Etsy

 

6. Wooden Frame Sunglasses by 4est Shades

Eco-Friendly Maple Wood Sunglasses by 4est Shades

4est Shades’ wooden sunglasses are all natural and handmade out of real maple and cherry wood. The company also make styles in bamboo.

All of their eco-friendly sunglasses are polarized to provide the UV protection you’d expect from any top brand. Plus, their high-quality wooden and bamboo sunglasses are super durable. Every pair comes with an engraved bamboo case and a microfiber cloth for upkeep and safekeeping. Eco-conscious in both product and practice, 4est Shades plants two trees for every pair of sunglasses they sell.

Eco-Friendly Wood Sunglasses by 4est Shades - Back View

Price: $32.95 – 49.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Blue Planet Beechwood Arm Sunglasses
Beechwood Arm Sunglasses by Blue Planet

Blue Planet is another socially conscious eyewear company whose brand means a lot more than quality eyewear. Based in Santa Barbara, California, they create sunglasses and corrective eyewear with a variety of sustainable materials, including wood, bamboo, recycled metal, and recycled plastic. You can see their recycled styles in my post “Recycled Sunglasses: Look Good While Doing Good.”

With every pair of glasses Blue Planet sells, they donate a pair of glasses to a person in need through their charitable partners. To date, they’ve improved the sight for over 400,000 visually impaired people around the world.

Here’s a video featuring Lisa Lawenda, a VP at Blue Planet, and Matt Weinstein, the company’s brand manager, talking about Blue Planet’s Visualize Change program, which helps restore sight for people around the world:

Price: $34.95 – $54.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Wood Frame Sunglasses by Amoloma

Pear Wood Sunglasses by Amoloma with Gold Lenses
Amoloma is another brand that’s making eco-friendly sunglasses in sustainable materials like pear wood, bamboo, recycled skateboard decks, and also cellulose acetate. Their lenses are all polarized for optimal UV protection. And if you’re looking for more colorful options, check out their styles made from recycled skateboards in my post “Recycled Sunglasses: Look Good While Doing Good.”

Wood Sunglasses by Amoloma - Side ViewPrice: $19.99 – $119.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Proof Sunglasses in Sustainable Wood

Eco-Friendly Wood Sunglasses by Proof Eyewear

Socially conscious brand Proof Eyewear donates 12% of their annual profits to charitable organizations around the world. They started making their wooden sunglasses from scraps in the family’s sawmill, and they eventually expanded to using recycled aluminum and bioplastics in their frames.

Known as the “Shark Tank Sunglasses,” Proof Sunglasses had their television debut on the popular show Shark Tank a few years ago. I loved story behind these socially conscious shades when I heard it. Little did I imagine at the time that I would be blogging about Proof Eyewear someday.

In their wood framed sunglasses, Proof used FSC certified wood. FSC is short for the Forest Stewardship Council, which is an international nonprofit that sets global standards for forest products. These standards help to promote eco-friendly, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests.

Wood Frame Sunglasses by Proof Eyewear on Guy

Proof’s lenses are UVA and UVB protected, and if you wear prescription lenses, you can easily swap them out in Proof’s eco-friendly frames.

Price: $64.00 – $119.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Woodzee Wooden Sunglasses

Wood Wayfarer Sunglasses by Woodzee

Woodzee hand makes their wood framed sunglasses in a variety of sustainable and reclaimed woods, including madrone, oak, and maple. Their shades are comfortable and lightweight, and each pair is one of a kind. All of their lenses are polarized with 100% UV400 protection.

Polarized Sunglasses in Pear Wood by Woodzee

Price: $54.99 – $99.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Tree Tribe Wooden Sunglasses

Eco Friendly Wood Frame Sunglasses by Tree Tribe

Tree Tribe is an outdoor lifestyle brand that plants a whopping 10 trees for every sale they make. They design a number of eco-friendly products, including water bottles, eco-conscious clothing, and of course – cool, sustainable sunglasses.

Their real wood sunglasses have interchangeable, scratch resistant polarized lenses that offer UV400 protection. You can easily swap out their lenses for prescription lenses, or if you’re just in the mood to change lens colors.

Dark Wood Framed Sunglasses by Tree TribeHere’s a video that gives you a taste of what Tree Tribe is all about:

Price: $52.00 – $69.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

12. Zoni Wear Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Wooden Sunglasses

Zoni Ebony Wood Sunglasses

Zoni Wear hand makes wooden sunglasses, watches, and other accessories in their workshop in Plymouth, New Hampshire. They’ll custom engrave your shades to make them all your own or the perfect gift. They have some unique lens styles too, so you can stand out from the crowd.

Price: $25.20 – $42.30

Buy on Etsy

 

13. Winkwood Eyewear Wooden Sunglasses

Round Striped Wood Sunglasses with Green Lenses

Winkwood wooden sunglasses are made in Melbourne, Australia. Their sunglasses are made with reclaimed skateboard wood, zebra wood, vera wood, cherry wood, aluminum, and other materials.

Winkwood Wooden Sunglasses

Price: $20.85

Buy on Etsy

 

14. Skateboard Wood Sunglasses

Skateboard Wood Sunglasses

To check out some cool sunglasses made with reclaimed skateboard wood, check out my post “Recycled Sunglasses: Look Good While Doing Good.”

 

Bamboo Sunglasses

You can find bamboo frame sunglasses in a variety of styles today, whether you’re looking for something modern or more traditional. Bamboo is a superstar sustainable material that makes great sunglasses. It’s easy to grow without much water, it grows fast, and it’s naturally anti-bacterial and water-resistant.

15. Bamboo Sunglasses by Tree Tribe

Bamboo Sunglasses by Tree Tribe

Buy one pair of these bamboo shades from Tree Tribe, and they’ll plant 10 trees in your honor.

Cat Eye Polarized Sunglasses in Bamboo by Tree TribeTree Tribe’s bamboo sunglasses come in wayfarer, cat eye, and other styles. And if you plan to be spending a lot of time in and out of the water, no worries – they’ll float!

Price: $47.81 – $55.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

16. Handmade Bamboo Sunglasses by Robin Wood

Handmade Bamboo Sunglasses by Robin WoodRobin Wood is a designer I found on Etsy that handmakes artisanal sunglasses from sustainable bamboo. Every pair has polarized lenses with UV400 protection, and they come with a two-year warranty. The company also designs wooden watches that have eco-friendly cork wristbands, so be sure to check out their Etsy store.

Price: $59.80

Buy on Etsy

 

17. Wood Wayfarer Sunglasses by Solo Eyewear

Wood Wayfarer Sunglasses by Solo Eyewear

Solo Eyewear is another brand with an inspiring give-back philosophy. They also focus on helping to restore vision for people in need.

All of their eco-friendly sunglasses are made with 100% sustainable materials, including repurposed bamboo and recycled plastic. And their lenses are UV protected and prescription-friendly. Their bamboo arm sunglasses come in a variety of frame shapes, including wayfarer, aviator, and round.

Price: $59.00 – $95.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 
To see more eco-conscious sunglasses, check out:

Recycled Sunglasses: Look Good While Doing Good

Recycled Sunglasses for Women and Men

 

2019 Is Shaping Up to Be a Big Year for Eco Fashion

Sole Role Organic Hoodie

This year is shaping up to be a fabulous one for eco-friendly fashion. Social media continues to shed light on the wasteful and polluting aspects of the fashion industry, and the recent report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has mercifully scared enough people to the point that climate change is now a trending topic in mainstream media outlets.

The report states that we have just 12 years to reduce greenhouse gases enough to keep global warming to a maximum of 1.5°C (34.7°F) or irreversible, catastrophic events will occur, including floods, droughts, and extreme heat that will impact hundreds of millions of people. The costs from our inability to act are already taking financial tolls on both wealthy and impoverished people.

In fact, Harvard University’s NiemanLab, which helps journalists stay on top changing media trends, has dubbed 2019 the “Year of the Climate Reporter.”

 

What does this mean for fashion?

Stella McCartney Store in Beverly Hills, CA
Stella McCartney Store, Beverly Hills, CA.

Climate change is going to impact every sector of our economy and our lifestyles, and in many ways, it already has.

The decisions that designers and consumers make now will dictate whether the fashion industry is a scourge to our planet or a part of the solution.

According to the online art and design site AnOther, the ethical and eco-friendly clothing market grew by nearly 20% last year, notably because millennials don’t want to buy clothing that has a negative impact on the environment.

 

UN Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action

Another groundbreaking development that started last year promises to boost the eco-fashion movement even more. Stakeholders in the fashion industry cooperated to create the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action under the auspices of UN Climate Change.

The charter identifies ways in which the textile, clothing, and fashion industries can work together on holistic commitments to fight climate change. And it goes beyond previous commitments with a goal of reaching an industry-wide 30% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, and net-zero emissions by 2050.

Here’s a video that talks about the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action:

 

Vegan Fashion Takes the Lead

Handmade Natural Rattan Purse

Sustainable and vegan fashion are two branches of the same tree, and the rise of veganism and vegan fashion, including vegan shoes and accessories, is helping to infuse more sustainable practices into the fashion industry.

A group of top designers have already announced they will exclude fur from their lineups, and the first Vegan Fashion Week will take place in Los Angeles starting February 1st.

Because animal agriculture is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, eating a plantbased diet is one of the easiest ways we can personally fight climate change.

Many vegans considered themselves to be environmentalists, so vegan consumerism is extending well beyond eating organic and non-GMO food to wearing ethical and eco-friendly clothing, as well as choosing organic and vegan personal care and homeware items.

 

Vegan Designers Who Believe in Sustainability

Eco-Friendly and Vegan Riding Boots by Will's of London

A new breed of vegan designers, like Will’s of London, are playing a big role in combining cruelty-free and sustainable business practices by infusing them into every aspect of their supply chains and operations.

Will’s creates a 100% vegan line of men’s and women’s shoes and boots. He also uses OEKO-TEX® certified vegan leather in his designs and runs a carbon-neutral supply chain. Furthermore, Will’s shoes and boots come in sustainable, eco-friendly packaging that can be recycled.

 

Recycled Fashion: Not Your Cousin’s Hand-Me-Downs

Men's and Women's Recycled Sunglasses

Other exciting development are happening with a rise of clothing rental services, such as Rent the Runway and the increased use of recycled materials in textiles.

Increasingly, you can find t-shirts and other clothing, as well as accessories like sunglasses, that are made with recycled plastic.

And of course, cool vintage clothing pieces will never go out of style!

First Vegan Fashion Week Starts February 1st in Los Angeles

Vegan Fashion WeekThis year is going to be an exciting year for anyone who wears clothes and cares about animals. (Hopefully, that’s most of you!) Los Angeles will be hosting the premier Vegan Fashion Week (V/FW) starting February 1st. The event is sure to draw a crowd, with affordable ticket prices from $20-$60, which you can get via the V/FW website.

 

Empowering Consumers with a Tribute to Animals

According to V/FW, the four-day event was created to “empower conscious brands and humans globally with an elevated platform for achievement, inspiration, and discovery.” The event will be not only a tribute to glamour and cutting edge design, but also a “tribute to animals and an ode to the end of animal exploitation in all forms.”

The week will kick off with an invite-only “Opening Soirée & Tribute” at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles. It will be hosted by the event’s creative director Emmanuelle Rienda, who is, naturally, an animal rights activist.

On Saturday, February 2nd, the runway show will begin in the Fashion Theater in the California Market Center. A list of designers and exhibitors will be posted on the V/FW website soon.

Also on Saturday, and carrying through to Sunday, there will be a Vegan Lounge and panel discussions. Panel topics will include animal rights, social justice, circularity, and technology.

 

More Designers Are Banning Fur

In too many ways, the fashion industry has been slow to stop exploiting animals for the sake of style. It’s ironic given the industry’s obsession with being forward thinking, ahead of the times, and trend setting. However, the rate at which top designers are joining the cruelty-free movement is promising. According to Vogue, here are some of the leading designers who have finally seen the light and gone fur-free (or never used it in the first place, like Stella McCartney):

Burberry

Calvin Klein

DKNY

Giorgio Armani

Gucci

John Galliano

Michael Kors

Ralph Lauren

Stella McCartney

Tommy Hilfiger

Versace

Vivienne Westwood

Now, we just need to get all of the leading designers who are still using leather or other animal skin in their creations to stop using it, and we’ll be on our way to a far more compassionate world!

 

To see more vegan-friendly fashion, check out these style guides on UniGuide:

Vegan Clutches, Shoulder Bags, and Purses

Vegan Handbags and Purses Guide

Best 100% Vegan Shoe Brands

Women’s Vegan Boot Guide

Cool Men’s Vegan Boots Guide

Vegan Cowboy Boots Guide

Women's Vegan Sandals

Vegan Sandals for Women

Vegan T-Shirts

Vegan and Eco-Friendly Hoodies

Wood and Bamboo Sunglasses for Women and Men 2

Recycled Sunglasses Guide

Wood and Bamboo Sunglasses Guide

15 Easy Ways You Can Help Bees, Butterflies, and Other Insects

Insects

Chances are, unless you’re an entomologist or an exterminator, you don’t spend much of your day thinking about bugs. But if you spend a few minutes a day, or even more than a few minutes, you’re probably worried about our natural world. So am I.

The lowly bug, so often viewed with derision, trampled underfoot, sprayed with poison, swatted, and ridiculed – just so happens to be supporting life on this planet, and that includes us. It’s beyond time for us to give insects the overdue love, nurturing, and attention they deserve – because they are in deep trouble. And it’s all out fault.

 

The Insect Apocalypse

Insects around the world are facing an apocalypse as a result of toxins we humans put into the environment and as a result of anthropogenic (yep, that’s us too) climate change. Like plants, insects are a foundational contributor to sustaining life on Earth. And it’s up to use to save them.

I must say, writing this post was like pulling a thread on a sweater that slowly began to unravel. One link to one piece of research led to another and another. As I learned more about insects, I understood even more acutely how they personify the interdependence of life on Earth – how fully we all depend on biodiversity.

And it’s our own hubris – our self-involved preoccupation with our own species, how we fetishize our own wants, politics, and neuroses – that has caused us to totally drop the ball, to miss the big picture and allow this catastrophe to happen. Time to wake up and take stronger action.

 

How do insects support life on Earth?

A Shamrock Spider (Araneus trifolium) in its web with fog droplets, San Francisco, CA. Photo: Brocken Inaglory.

As explained by the e-learning site CK12, insects perform many important functions that sustain life on our planet:

  • They aerate the soil.
  • They pollinate flowering plants. (Thanks bees, wasps, butterflies, and ants!)
  • They help control the size of other insect populations, such as aphids and caterpillars, who eat plants. (Thanks lady bugs, spiders, and praying mantises!)
  • They feed birds, fish, reptiles, other animals, and other insects.
  • They scavenge, eating fallen trees and dead animals, and then recycle those nutrients back into the soil. (Thanks, beetles!)
  • They create top soil, which is the nutrient-rich layer of soil that is fundamental to helping plants grow. (Thanks, all bugs for fertilizing the soil with your droppings!)
  • They burrow and dig, creating underground tunnels that help provide water to plants. (Thanks beetles and ants!)

Pollinating insects help at least 30 percent of the world’s crops and 90 percent of our wild plants to thrive. Without bees to spread seeds, many plants, including food crops, would die off (NRDC).

In essence, Nature has things dialed down. She’s been doing this for a very long time, and insects are part of her creation. They deserve to be here as much as we do. And clearly, we need each other!

 

Many Species of Insects, but an Alarming Drop in Their Populations

Entomologist and volunteers at the Work on Bugs Day, Gunnersbury Triangle Nature Reserve
Entomologist and volunteers at the Work on Bugs Day, Gunnersbury Triangle Nature Reserve. Photo: Ian Alexander

According to Scientific American, there are close to one million species of insects on Earth, and some entomologists think there could be 30-times that number that are yet to be discovered. By comparison, there are only 5,416 species of mammals.

But report after report is showing that insect populations are in staggering decline all over the world:

  • A study published in PLOS ONE in 2017 conducted research that spanned the past three decades. It found that 75% of flying insects have vanished from 63 nature protection areas studied in Germany.
  • A study published in Science in 2014 reported that there was a 45 percent drop in the number of invertebrates worldwide, most of which are insects.
  • A 2018 census found an alarming decline in monarch butterflies on the California coast. Scientists in Australia were also shocked by similar decline in there.
  • In 2017, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed the bumble bee on the Endangered Species List for the first time in history because there’s been an 88 percent decline in their numbers and an 87 percent loss in the amount of territory they inhabit.
  • And by no means a side note (though I’m trying to stay focused on insects here), 40% of the world’s bird populations are in decline, according to a study released by the nonprofit BirdLife International.

This is not acceptable and its solely our responsibility to fix this. Here are some ideas for how we can all help.

 

What You Can Do to Help Bees, Butterflies, and Other Insects

1. Eat certified organic and non-GMO verified foods.

USDA Certified Organic and Non-GMO Verified Foods

This one’s a biggie. According to the nonprofit Pesticide Action Network (PAN), herbicide-resistant, genetically modified (GE) seeds “have driven a massive increase in pesticide applications since they hit the market in the 1990s — and that’s no accident.”

Genetically modified seeds are causing farmers to use more pesticides and herbicides, which kill all kinds of insects, including pollinators on whom our food supply is dependent.

According to PAN, GE crops have not delivered on their promise of producing higher yields and reduced reliance on pesticides. Instead, they’ve dramatically driven up the use of harmful chemical inputs, which has put a burden of health risks and higher costs on farmers and their local communities.

  • Adoption of GE seeds and crops in the U.S. has resulted in a 527 million pound increase in herbicide use between 1996 and 2011, according to USDA data.
  • And in 2011 alone GE crops used 20 percent more pesticides on average than non-GE crops.

GE seeds that require an increase in pesticide use has increased the market share for corporations, including Bayer, which now owns Monsanto, and DowDuPont – companies that make pesticides and that are responsible for genetically modifying seeds. Bayer buying Monsanto has created a giant seeds and pesticides company. Why else would a pesticide company want to own a seed company? It makes financial sense for them.

Let’s always keep in mind: Pesticides are poison.
As poisons, pesticides should be an exception. Why have they become the norm and organic the exception? I get that it’s a complicated issue. Some studies show that GM crops have resulted in a decrease in the use of some chemical insecticides. But that’s a rarity. And insects and birds are still facing a threat of mass extinction.

A class of pesticides called neonicotinoids have been found to cause entire colonies of honeybees to collapse.

The nonprofit Beyond Pesticides provides a variety of resources that explains how this works, such as this video:

According to the Organic Consumers Association, GM seeds are drenched in neonicotinoids. Furthermore, Monsanto’s Roundup (glyphosate), which is used to grow GMO crops as well as to kill weeds in yards, gardens, schoolyards, and public parks, are killing bees and other pollinators. In addition, its impacting birds and other wildlife, and not to mention – us. (Gluten sensitivity is not just a fad. It’s directly tied to the increased use of Roundup on wheat fields.)

I’m all for capitalism and making money – but only if it’s done in a way with minimal health, animal, and environmental impact – not greed. You don’t have to be a scientist to know that:

Less Poison in Our Environment and Less Death of Living Creatures = Good
&
More Poison and More Death = Bad

What’s good for the birds and bees is good for us.

Look for the USDA Certified and Non-GMO Verified labels.

USDA Organic and Non-GMO Verified Seals
In the U.S., all USDA certified organic foods are non-GMO. Different countries have their own organic certification programs (if they have them at all), so it’s important to be familiar with the standards for the country in which you live.

The Non-GMO Project is a certification system that ensures that a food contains less than 0.9% genetically modified ingredients. However, there’s no rule that says non-GMO foods must also be grown without pesticides. In fact, according to the Food Babe, non-GMO crops like wheat can be pre-harvested with Roundup and still be considered non-GMO.

In an interview on iHealthTube, Jeffrey Smith, a world-renowned expert on GMOs and the author of the book Seeds of Deception, says that the only problem with going with straight USDA organic certification is that USDA certified organic, while it prohibits the use of GMOs, does not actually test for GMOs. Whereas, Non-GMO Verified does.

Here’s a video where Jeffrey Smith explains the difference between USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified:

So, long story short, for your health and the health of the birds, bees, and everyone else, eat certified organic foods whenever possible, and look for the two seals on your food products. Yes, organic and non-GMO foods can be more expensive, but of all the investments you can make, investing in your health and life on this planet is a no-brainer.

 

2. When you wear cotton, make sure it’s organic cotton.

Cute Vegan T-Shirts

Even though it’s a natural fiber, non-organic cotton uses a lot of insecticides and pesticides to produce:

  • Cotton accounts for 24% of the insecticides and pesticides used globally, while just comprising 2.4% of the world’s crop land (Pesticide Action Network).
  • 94% of the cotton grown in the U.S. is genetically modified (USDA).

In addition, non-organic, commercial cotton has a host of other problems associated with it.

 

3. Use sheets, towels, dish towels, and other textiles that are made with organic cotton.

Organic Cotton Bossa Nova Kingsize Hammock in Ivory with Couple by La Siesta

If you look around your home, you can probably find a lot of cotton besides your clothing. For the same reason you want organic cotton clothes, you should opt for other organic cotton textiles. The more of us who demand only organic cotton, the less pesticides will be used. In addition, increased demand will help drive the cost of organic cotton down. Let’s make organic cotton the norm instead of the exception.

 

4. When gardening and growing food, don’t use pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, or artificial fertilizers.

Organic Garden
Organic garden. Photo: Nholly.

There are a number of ways you can create a healthy garden while avoiding the use of toxic and artificial fertilizers. The “But is it vegan?” question does come into play with some organic fertilizers, such as manure, sea bird and earthworm castings, and bat guano, so you’ll have to make a decision on whether you want to go with those options are not. Kitchen compost can also be a great source for organic fertilizer, providing you’re eating organic foods.

Natural, vegan fertilizers that provide a good source of nitrogen include organic alfalfa meal, cottonseed meal, and soybean meal. While rock phosphate can be a good source for phosphorus, which helps with root development, flowering blooms, sturdy stems, and winter hardiness. And kelp meal is a good source of potassium, which also promotes flower blooms as well as fruit production and resistance to pests.

Planting companion plants in your garden can also naturally repel pests. For example, garlic repels aphids and basil helps to protect tomatoes.

 

5. Plant native plants in your yard and garden.

Veltheimia bracteata, a native plant growing in South Africa. Photo: Jon Richfield.

Planting different types of native plants provides food and refuge for insects. According to an article in The Guardian, 97% of the wildflower meadows in the UK alone have been destroyed.

And a study published in the Smithsonian found that the lack of native plants in people’s yards has led to a decline in suburban bird populations. “Insect-eating birds that depend on the availability of high-calorie, high-protein cuisine — namely caterpillars and spiders — during the breeding season to feed their young are finding the menu severely lacking in backyards landscaped with even a small proportion of nonnative plants.”

National Geographic recommends having some kind of native plant blooming for each season, or at least in spring, summer, and fall, to support pollinators, as some species are active for a couple months each year, while others are active year round.

In addition, a variety of types of native plants that are different heights and shapes encourage a diversity of insects.

The nonprofit BugLife provides useful information for planting with insect health in mind.

How to Plant an Insect-Friendly Garden

And if you like to grow some non-native fruits, vegetables, and other plants, National Geographic recommends planting native plants on borders in your garden. This will improve pollination of your crops and will attract and support a variety of pollinators, such as wasps and hover flies, which control crop pests.

 

6. Create mini habitats on your roof, balcony, or windowsill.

Balcony garden
Balcony garden. Photo: Nicholas Gemini.

The majority of people in the U.S., about 63%, live in metropolitan areas, and about 77% live in detached, single family homes. But whether you live in the city or suburbs, in a mobile home or an apartment on the 20th floor, you have the opportunity to create a mini habitat to help insects and other species.

Naturalist bloggers Nancy Lawson of The Humane Gardener and Kelly Brenner of The Metropolitan Field Guide provide a plethora of ideas for creating sanctuaries where insects can thrive, even outside a high-rise in the big city.

Window flower boxes, potted plants on balconies, vertical gardens on walls, and rooftop gardens planted with native plants can all help insects and birds to survive and thrive.

Vertical Garden Kit

Amazon sells a number of popular kits for growing vertical gardens. >>

 

7. Support insect corridors.

Garden City Street
Planter on Magnificent Mile, Chicago, IL.

Connecting your own yard or balcony to those of your neighbors and other green spaces in your neighborhood, whether they be parks or road median, can all contribute to creating safe havens for not just insects, but birds, bats, amphibians, and reptiles.

 

8. Provide water.

Insects need water just like we do, so every garden, including those on balconies, should have a source of water.

The YouTube channel Wild About Nature also provides some useful gardening tips that help insects. This video has a great example of how easy it is to provide a simple water source for insects:

 

9. Provide bug hotels.

Bees and other insects need homes just as we do.

Bug Hotels

Amazon sells a variety of bug hotels for bees, ladybugs, and other insects. >>

 

Or, they’re fun and easy to build too.

This video by Grow Veg shows you how to do it:

 

10. Plant milkweed.

Monarch Butterfly on Milkweed
Monarch Butterfly on Milkweed. Photo: Derek Ramsey.

The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation recommends planting milkweed that’s native for your area in your garden and other locations. Milkweed provides an essential habitat and breeding ground for caterpillars and monarch butterflies, and it supports a diversity of pollinators with its nectar. Xerces provides a useful directory of milkweed seed providers so you can find seeds that are native to your area.

 

11. Don’t buy flowers that have double blooms.

Another argument for native plants is that that mouthparts of native pollinators have adapted to accessing the nectar in native plants to their natural habitats, whereas nonnative flowers and those with double blooms may make it impossible for them to access the nectar.

 

12. Don’t rake or mulch.

Roo with leaves
Roo with leaves, San Anselmo, CA.

Fallen leaves offer benefits to insects, other animals, and the environment, says the National Wildlife Federation. Leaves and other plant yard debris account for more than 13 percent of the nation’s solid waste, which equates to 33 million tons per year. And much of it is discarded in plastic bags, making it difficult to biodegrade.

Then, it’s disposed of in solid-waste landfills, which are the largest source of man-made methane emissions in the U.S. – a potent greenhouse gas. (And this doesn’t even include the CO2 emitted from leaf blowers and the trucks transporting the yard debris to the landfill.)

Seventy percent of bee species dig nests in ground and raise their young there, which they can’t do if there’s no ground cover or mulch is in the way, says National Geographic. If you do need to get rid of some yard debris, better to compost it and use it as fertilizer.

 

13. Don’t use bug zappers.

It goes without saying that big zappers kill insects, including beneficial insects. But they’ve been proven to not work for killing mosquitoes.

According to Science Daily, mosquitoes are more attracted to the CO2 emitted by people, so they’re usually not going near the bug zapper anyway.

And a study conducted by researchers at Kansas State University found that the insects that are electrocuted produce a shower of airborne bacteria and virus-laden particles, which humans then breathe in.

The issue is so problematic that healthcare professionals recommend bug zappers not be used in food handling areas, hospitals, daycare facilities, or anywhere else that control of microorganisms and insects is important.

 

14. Volunteer.

Bird Watchers
Photo: Nina Marta.

Besides purchasing organic products and creating insect-friendly habitats around your home, there are a variety of ways that you can volunteer your time to help insects, including taking part in citizen science programs. Here are a few:

Pollinator Partnership

Honeybee Health Coalition

The Xerces Society’s Bumble Bee Watch

San Francisco State University’s Great Sunflower Project

North American Butterfly Association’s Butterfly Counts

Monarch Watch’s Monarch Larva Monitoring Project

The Entomological Society of America

 

15. Invest in life on Earth – Donate.

Bees pollinating flower in Hortus Botanicus Botanical Gardens, Leiden, The Netherlands
Bees pollinating flower in Hortus Botanicus Botanical Gardens, Leiden, The Netherlands. Photo: Ronald van der Graaf.

Whether you have time to volunteer or not, you can always donate to organizations that are doing the research and heavy lifting to conserve insect populations around the world. You can find local nonprofit or larger, global ones.

A number of charities are listed on the UK’s Amateur Entomologists Society website, and here are few more:

Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation

BugLife

North American Butterfly Association

BeeInformed.org

The Honeybee Conservancy

Save Our Monarchs Foundation

 

Here are a few more insect resources that feature events and more:

The Bug Chicks has a list of events and other resources.
SaveNature.org brings insect discovery labs to classrooms.
Meetup features insect events.
And you can find more by Googling “insect fairs.”

 

Thank you for caring, and even better – taking action!

Red Heart

7 Ways You May Lose Money Because of Climate Change

Climate March Sign
Climate March, Takoma Park, Maryland, April 2017. Photo: Edward Kimmel.

Climate change is no longer something we need to worry about for the future. It’s already here and it’s already costing us money, not to mention the lives of other species with whom we share our planet. Here are ways that you could lose money as a result of climate change – or may be losing money already.

According GoBankingRates, 45 U.S. states will experience a loss in GDP as a result of climate change, especially those in the South and the lower Midwest.

But how will this affect your personal bottom line? Here are a few ways:

1. You could pay more for food.

A young man in drought conditions in Ethiopia.
A young man in drought conditions in Ethiopia. Photo: USAID Africa Bureau.

According to scientists with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and as reported in The Guardian, changes in temperature and rainfall patterns might lead to food price increases of 3 to 84 percent by 2050. And crop yields around the world could drop by 25 percent from 2039 to 2049. Even in the U.S., where we have ready access to a variety of foods, a shrinking global food supply could drive up prices here.

When I hear stats like this, it makes me even more concerned about Big Ag dumping more genetically modified, pesticide-ridden seeds and poisons into the soil to try to boost crop yields. Keep buying organic and supporting organic farmers!

 

2. You could pay more for water.

Colorado River, Page, Arizona.
The Colorado River, Page, Arizona. Photo: Adrille.

Just as it’s already impacting our food supply, including with the catastrophic impacts on pollinating insects, climate change is impacting our water supply.

According to Paul Dickinson, CEO of the Carbon Disclosure Project, a nonprofit that works with corporations and municipalities to disclose the environmental impacts of their operations, “Much of the impact of climate change will be felt through changing patterns of water availability, with shrinking glaciers and changing patterns of precipitation, increasing the likelihood of drought and flood.”

Droughts are among the most expensive weather-related disasters in the world as they impact ecosystems, agriculture, and human society, says NASA climate scientist Dr. Benjamin Cook in an article for CarbonBrief.org. And regions “as diverse as California, the Eastern Mediterranean, East Africa, South Africa, and Australia have all experienced severe – and, in some cases, unprecedented – droughts in recent years.”

We cannot view water as an unlimited resource. We need to view it as precious and do what we can to protect our water supplies, including from contamination and run-off from factory farms. Growing crops to feed livestock consumes 56% of the fresh water in the U.S. So, people who eat a vegan diet save 1,100 gallons of fresh water per day. In addition, animal agriculture is one of the biggest sources of water pollution in the U.S.

 

3. Your income could drop.

ATM Machine
Photo: Alex Shorter.

The average person should expect to lose a quarter of their income as a result of climate change by 2100, say researchers at UC Berkeley. For millennials and people with children, this is an especially serious concern. Millennials are expected to collectively lose $8.8 trillion in potential lifetime income due to climate change.

 

4. You could pay even more for healthcare.

Doctor's visit
Photo: Fort Rucker.

Just like those of animals and insects, our human bodies have not had time to adapt to the environmental changes resulting from climate change. In essence, climate change is the result of technical advances happening at warp speed, and the Earth’s natural systems, including our bodies, have not had time to adapt.

According to CNN, higher temperatures will cause more heat stroke and even increased deaths, notably in places like the Midwest. There will also be in increase in mosquito and tickborne diseases, like Zika, dengue fever, and chikungunya, as well as more cases of West Nile virus.

Furthermore, pollution and other changes in the air will cause asthma and allergies to become worse.

In addition, we’ll have more exposure to foodborne and waterborne diseases as microorganisms thrive in warmer temperatures.

 

5. You could pay more for energy.

Even though you might pay less for heat in winter due to global warming, demand for more electricity to run air conditioners is expected to outweigh those savings. According to U.S. News and World Report, the average American should expect an increase in energy costs of 10 to 22 percent.

However, there is hope in the form of renewables. An article in Forbes says the cost of renewables is expected to be lower than fossil fuels by 2020. (We know renewables are already our saving grace when it comes to fighting climate change!)

 

6. You could pay more for property insurance.

Fire Destruction
Photo: U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

Since 1980, the frequency of weather-related events that cost $1 billion or more in damages has grown dramatically. Today, those costs have reached a total of $1.1 trillion, according to a story in Yahoo! Finance.

Besides being directly affected by natural disasters by losing loved ones, pets, and homes, many people are already experiencing an increase in their insurance premiums. The recent deadly and disastrous fires in both Northern and Southern California have caused homeowners’ insurance premiums to skyrocket (L.A. Times).

 

7. You could see an increase in taxes.

Texas Army National Guard Hurricane Harvey Response
The Texas Army National Guard responds to Hurricane Harvey in Houston, Texas, 2017. Photo: 1st Lt. Zachary West.

As natural disasters become more expensive, someone has to pay for the damages. While I expect there will be a lot of law suits against the culprits (get ready, fossil fuel companies), in all likelihood, our tax dollars will be used to foot much of the bill.

According to U.S. News, extreme weather “plays havoc on the nation’s transportation infrastructure. High heat can bend railways, soften asphalt, and expand steel in bridges and other structures.” In addition, flooding impacts roadbeds and bridge supports. So, we should expect to invest in a lot of new infrastructure and repairs.

Climate change will negatively impact so many areas of our lives, from the cost of food, to healthcare, to insurance, you can see how we have to take action on multiple levels right now. But even though this is depressing to consider, I’m a firm believer in the innovative tenacity of the human spirit. It’s just a matter of taking massive action instead of passively sitting on the sidelines and doing nothing. I’ll share more information on what you can do personally to fight climate change soon.

27 Vegan Cowboy Boots and Western Boots

Vegan Cowboy Boots

Can you be vegan and still wear cowboy boots? Heck yeah, you can! When doing my research, I was happy to find a variety of vegan cowboy boots and western boots for all you compassionate cowgirls and cowboys out there. While there are definitely more vegan cowboy boots for women than there are for men, you’ll see a few styles for guys at the end of this post. (And if you’re looking for other men’s vegan boot styles, check out my post on cool men’s boots.)

The History of Cowboy Boots

But first, a little lesson on the history of cowboy boots… Cowboy boots date back to the 1600s, when riding boots started to appear in Europe that had “high tops, pointed toes, and 2″ stacked heels,” says ShoeInfo. But where did those 2″ heels originate? Apparently, they were first seen in the 13th century on invading Mongol tribesmen who wore bright red wooden heels on their boots. According to ShoeInfo, “Mongols were consummate horsemen and their easy victories left a mark on European society.”

Since owning and caring for a horse required wealth, and being on horseback placed a person physically above those who were not, people on horseback in high heels became associated with nobility. To this day, we say “well-heeled” to describe a person who is wealthy or aristocratic. Eventually, heeled riding boots made their way to the Americas, quite possibly on the feet of the Conquistadors.

Throughout history, boots were made with animal skin. Thankfully, today we have access to a variety of materials that make durable, warm, and comfortable boots without harming animals.

So, without further ado, here are some sweet faux-leather, faux-suede, and otherwise vegan cowgirl and cowboy boots.

 

High Heel Cowboy Boots and Western Boots for Women

Very Volatile Cowboy Boots

Very Volatile is a brand that offers a number of western boots that are made from manmade materials, so you can bring out your inner cowgirl and still be cruelty-free. If you like cowboy boots that have the leather look but are not made of leather, you’ll find them with Very Volatile.

1. Denver Cowboy Boot by Very Volatile

Denver Boot in Green Faux Leather by Very VolatileFor a slightly off beat cowgirl boot, check out this style in green faux leather with classic cowboy boot styling and a 3″ heel. And if green doesn’t suit your fancy, they also come in brown. They have a rounded toe and a deep V in the front, and, they’re embellished with cute little silver studs.

Price: $69.95 – $84.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Raspy Cowboy Boot by Very Volatile

Women's Raspy Vegan Cowboy Boots by Very Volatile in WineAnother classic ladies’ western boot by Vert Volatile, the Raspy comes in black, tan, brown, or red wine vegan leather. These high-heeled cowgirl boots have pull up tabs on the sides and a gold accent above the heel.

Price: $44.99 – $85.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. High Heeled Rio Grande Cowboy Boot by Very Volatile

Vegan Cowboy Boots by Very Volatile with Green InlaySexy 3” high heels make these cowgirl boots just a little more fun! They’re made of tan faux leather and have decorate teal green inlays. The shaft is 11″ from arch and they have rubber soles for easy walking.

Price $58.49

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Vegan Cowgirl Boots by Roper

You don’t have to be a vegan or a vegetarian to love all of the styles of animal-friendly boots offered by Roper. You just have to love wearing a good pair of cowboy boots! Roper also makes some adorable girls and boys cowboy boots that are vegan, plus a few men’s styles. Just a note: Roper makes leather cowboy boots too, so be sure to read the product details before you buy.

4. Women’s Tall Western Boots with Embroidered Flowers

Women's Tall Faux Leather Western BootsThese tall, elegant cowboy boots by Roper are one of my faves. They have lovely western flowers embroidered on them and a tall 16” shaft. The heel is 2.25”.

Price: $68.54 – $99.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Sparkly, Light Up Starlight Cowboy Boots by Roper

Women's Black Faux Leather Light-Up Cowboy Boots by RoperHigh-tech cowgirls will love these light up cowboy boots! They come with a USB charger that you connect inside the shaft of the boot, which charges them up. Charges them up for what, you might ask? So, they sparkle when you walk and dance, Girl! Look out, Dolly! There’s a new Jolene in town! These light up cowboy boots come in black or brown.

Price $89.33 – $150.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

6. Stars and Stones Cowboy Boots by Roper


If you love stars but you’re looking for a little more subtlety, these Stars and Stones Boots by Roper will do you right. The shaft measures approximately 13″ from the arch, and the heel is 2.25”. They also have a flexible sole and soft support insole for extra comfort. These vegan western boots come in brown or black.

Price: $78.86 – $95.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Sparkle Inlay Cowboy Boots by Roper

Women's Sparkle Inlay Western Boots by RoperFor a little extra country glimmer, check out these cute sparkly cowboy boots. They’re the perfect combo of rugged faux leather with a stacked 2.75” heel and a little bit of glitz underneath. The shaft measures 13″ from arch.

Price: $53.10 – $95.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Women’s Crush Accessory Western Boot by Durango

Women's Accessorized Faux Leather Western Boot by Durango

These cool cowgirl boots by Durango have a rugged leather look and special extra features like antiqued metal hardware and wrap-around belts. They come to mid-calf, which makes them perfect with jeans or a cowgirl skirt. They sort of remind me of Guns n Roses fan, but whether or not you’re a fan of that band, if you’re looking for a unique pair of faux leather cowboy boots, this pair will fit the bill.

Price: $109.00 – $164.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Western-Style Faux Leather Boots with Ring and Strap by Refresh

Black Faux Leather Western Biker Boots by RefreshFor a slightly more biker babe style western boot, check out these slouchy, ankle strap with ring boots by Refresh. They show you can be both badass and cruelty-free at the same time. The shaft is 9.75″ and they come in black or brown.

Price: $22.24 – $45.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

10. Slouchy Western-Style Boot by Cambridge Select

Slouchy Western Style Boots with Ankle Straps and Rings - Bone WhiteSimilar to the style by Refresh, these cool and cute synthetic leather boots by Cambridge Select can be worn with jeans, a skirt, of your favorite leggings. They have side pull tabs for easy on and off and they come in five different colors, including dark brown, light brown, taupe, bone, and black. The stacked heel is 2.5” and the shaft is 9.75”.

Price: $33.25 – $40.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

11. Red Cowboy Boots plus Purple, Turquoise Blue, and More with Extra Bling by Helen’s Heart

Sparkly Purple Cowboy Boots

If you need some extra pizzazz for your next party and faux leather cowboy boots just aren’t enough, check out these colorful and fun bling boots by Helen’s Heart. They come in purple, red, fuchsia, turquoise, pink, gold, silver, black, brown, and sparkle gray. They’re made of rubber, for all of you vegan cowgirls who live in rainy locales and like to brighten up everyone’s day when you walk by. The shaft measures 13” from the arch and the heel is 3.25”. They have a side zipper for easy on and off.

Price: $90.00 – $109.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Low Heel Cowboy Boots for Women

12. Classic Low Heel Western Boot in Faux Leather by Country Loves Boots

Classic Low Heel Ladies Western Boots

Here’s a classic pair of western boots that are made with animal-friendly, faux leather. They have round toe and the shaft is 12” from the arch. They have a low 2” heel and rubber soles for easy walking and dancing.

Price: $35.96 – $49.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. Women’s Riley Western Boot by Roper

Women's Red Cowboy Boots - Vegan Low Heel Western Riley Boots

Another classic cowboy boot with traditional top stitching, the Riley Boot by Roper is made with 100% manmade materials. This style comes in brown, red wine, and tan. The shaft measures 13″ from the arch, and the insole is padded for extra comfort.

Price: $54.16 – $79.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

14. Brown Cowboy Boots with Low Chunk Heels by Roper

Women's Low Heel Low Round Toe Western Boots in Brown Faux Leather

This cute, brown low western boot lets you show off a little more leg. The shaft measures just 9” from the arch and the heel is 1.25”.

Price: $51.25 – $68.01

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Vegan Western Boot with Cross by Roper

Women's Vegan Cowboy Boots with Crosses on Them
Sparkly crosses and decorate inlays make these low heeled vegan cowboy boots real attention getters. They come in black or brown. The shaft is 11.5″ from the arch and the heel is 1.5”. They have a padded, flexible insole and a non-marketing outsole.

Price: $71.60 – $99.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

16. Stars and Stripes Cowboy Boots by Durango

American Flag Cowboy Boots by Durango

Just in time for your 4th of July parties, these brown faux leather cowboy boots have a square toe and decorative American flags around the ankles. The shaft comes to mid-calf.

Price: $93.87 – $129.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Women’s Ankle Boot Cowboy Boots

17. Women’s Markie Bootie by Very Volatile

Women's Beige Vegan Cowgirl Ankle Boots - Markie by Very Volatile

These super cute cowboy boots by Very Volatile have a 12” shaft, perfect for showing off a little more leg under your cowgirl skirt of with your skinny jeans. The heel is 2” and they have pull up straps for easy on and off. They come in tan stone.

Price $49.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

18. Cute Cowgirl Boots in Velvet by Very Volatile

Blue Velvet Cowboy Ankle Boots

For a truly unique look, check out these adorable cowgirl ankle booties in velvet and faux leather. They come in black, blue, or red wine. They’re 100% synthetic and the shaft measures 12” from the arch. The heels are 2”.

Price: $24.99 – $69.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

19. Faux Suede Cowboy Ankle Boots by Breckelle’s

Faux Suede Ankle Boot Breckelle's Side View in Olive Green

Breckelle’s offers a wide variety of vegan boots, from vegan combat boots to faux leather ankle boots, and more. These faux suede western-style ankle boots come in a wide different colors, from mustard to red to black, tan, and more. Their versatile style with go with countless looks in your wardrobe. The shaft 8” from the arch and the high heel is 3.5”.

Price: $10.29 – $79.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

20. Slip-On V-Cut Faux Suede Ankle Boots

V-Cut Faux Suede Ankle Boot in Red

These faux suede booties received rave reviews on Amazon and they’ve been super popular on UnGuide. They’re the perfect blend of modern, urban style and subtle western flair, and they come in a variety of colors, including pale pink, rose, black, red, and olive. The shaft is 8” from the arch and the heel measures 3”.

$33.95 – $62.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

21. Side Zip Faux Suede Ankle Boot by Carlos Santana

Black Faux Suede Ankle Bootie by Carlos Santana
For a comfy vegan ankle boot, you can’t go wrong with these faux suede ankle boots by Carlos Santana. They have two size zips and the shaft hits just above your ankle. The heel is 1”. These comfortable vegan booties come in black, tan, or brown.

Price: $69.00

Buy Now at Macy's

 

22. Cute Faux Suede Studded Cowgirl Ankle Boots

Faux Suede Studded Cowgirl Ankle Boot in Forest Green

Inlayed silver studs give these adorable cowgirl ankle boots extra flair. The shaft is 6.5” and the low heel is 1.5”. They upper is a forest green textile and they’re made with 100% synthetic materials.

Price: $62.96

Buy Now at Nordstrom

 

23. White Flower Embroidered Western Style Ankle Boot

White Flower Embroidered Western Style Ankle Boot

Another adorable western-style ankle boot, this pair is made with animal-friendly white textile fabric and pretty embroidered pink flowers. They have a deep notch on each side for easy on and off that’s embellished with a bit of fringe. The shaft is just 4.25” and the stacked heel is 2”.

Price $108.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Men’s Cowboy Boots and Western Boots

24. Men’s Western Style Ankle Boots with Chain Strap by Metrocharm

Western Style Vegan Ankle Boots by MetrocharmThese non-leather men’s ankle boots have a cool western look with chained ankle straps and that are reminiscent of cowboy boot spurs. They have a side zip and come in brown or black faux leather.

Price: $29.99

Buy Now on Amazon Button in Red 360w

 

25. Non-Leather Cowboy Boots by Roper

Men's Vegan Cowboy Boots by RoperThese faux leather men’s cowboy boots by Roper come in a few different color combinations. They have a flexible rubber sole. The shaft is 11” from the arch and the heel is 1.5”.

Price: $68.54 – $90.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

26. Men’s Ankle Cowboy Boots by Alberto Fellini

Men's Western Style Ankle Boot in Vegan Leather

Alberto Fellini has been making cool synthetic shoes and boots for men for decades. These men’s vegan western style ankle boots have a size zipper for easy on and off. They have classic western style stitching and a cool ankle straps and rings. They come in black and brown.

Price: $34.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Men's Distressed Faux Leather Cowboy Ankle Boot

Here’s another cool men’s ankle cowboy boot. This style comes in distressed black, gray, or burgundy faux leather.

Price: $69.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

See more vegan boots on UniGuide:

Women’s Vegan Boot Guide

Cool Men’s Boots Guide

42 Vegan Handbags and Purses from Eco Chic Brands

Vegan Clutches, Shoulder Bags, and Purses

I’ve been planning to write a post about vegan handbags and purses for a while now because it’s such a fun topic. And truthfully, I got lost a little while doing my research because I found so many great bags. I discovered new, innovative designers who are working with high-quality vegan leather. Plus, new styles from well-established designers, like Stella McCartney and MATT and NAT, who continue to create gorgeous luxury handbags that are always cruelty-free.

I also discovered new materials (to me anyway) that I had not seen used before in handbags, like bamboo. I know, I know, purses have probably been made with bamboo for eons, but I can’t remember ever laying my eyes on one! Other natural materials used to make vegan handbags include hemp, raffia, and even palm leaves.

Plus, there are great affordable vegan bags made with faux leather and faux suede that are surely disrupting the leather handbag market. And of course, no UniGuide post would be complete without some recycled and upcycled options. Yes, Ladies, vegan handbags made from cement bags, tire inner tubes, and boat sails are leaving bags made with animal skin in the Dark Ages where they belong!

Vegan Handbags and Purses in this post:

Faux Leather Handbags and Purses

Faux Suede Handbags and Purses

Straw Handbags and Purses

Bamboo Handbags and Purses

Cork Handbags and Purses

Hemp and Other Natural Fiber Handbags and Purses

Recycled Handbags and Purses

 

Faux Leather Handbags and Purses

1. Eco-Friendly, 100% Vegan Handbags by LaBante London

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Eco-Friendly, 100% Vegan Handbags by LaBante London

LaBante London is a socially conscious handbag brand that donates 10% of their profits to charitable causes. LaBante’s founder, Vanita Badlani Bagri, experienced a pivotal moment in her life when she was in college. She passed a butcher’s shop where animals were kept alive in cages before they would be killed in front of customers and sold for their meat.

Bearing witness to this horror was transformative for Vanita. While she didn’t know at the time that she would eventually become a vegan handbag designer, this experience shaped her world view and the values that she infuses in all of LaBante’s products and operations today.

And not only are LaBante bags vegan, they’re also eco-friendly. The materials used have the look and feel of leather, but they’re actually made with recycled plastic bottles.

Eco-Friendly, Vegan Purses by LaBante London

Price: ~$63.00 – $289.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

2. Melie Bianco Vegan Handbags and Purses

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Melie Bianco Vegan Handbags and Purses

Melie Bianco is another PETA Approved, 100% vegan brand. And they produce their socially conscious handbags in ethical, fair trade conditions.

The vegan leather that Melie Bianco uses in their bags is made with polyurethane (PU). PU use fewer solvents and toxic chemicals than PVC (polyvinyl chloride), a type of plastic that’s used to make a cheaper faux leather. In addition, PU uses fewer resources to produce than does leather derived from animals.

In this video, Melie Bianco explains the difference between PU vegan leather and faux leather made from PVC:

Price: ~$35.00 – $65.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

3. Good Mood Moon Vegan Purses

Good Mood Moon Vegan Purses

Good Mood Moon also makes 100% vegan clutches, purses, and other cute bags. Self-described lovers of animals, nature, and color, they donate 5% of sales from their subtly colorful bags to homeless pet organizations.

Price: ~$25.00 – $68.00

Buy on Etsy

 

4. MATT & NAT Vegan Handbags

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

MATT & NAT Vegan HandbagsMATT & NAT’s name is derived from the words “materials” and “nature.” And these concepts are interwoven in every product they create, from their designer handbags and purses to fashionable shoes and other accessories. Their mission it to help unveil the “humanity, creativity and positivity found in all of us.”

MATT & NAT’s chic designs have been 100% vegan since the company was founded in 1995. They also infuse eco-friendly principles into their designs by using natural, plantbased, and recycled materials. You can see their stylish shoes in my post on vegan shoe brands.

Price: ~$65.00 – $195.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

5. Angela Roi Vegan Leather Bags

Angela Roi Vegan Leather Bags

Angela Roi’s love for animals and their passion for fashion inspired them to create their ultra chic, 100% cruelty-free handbags. They believe there’s no reason for fashion to be cruel, and they take these values a step further by supporting animal welfare organizations.

Angela Roi Designer Vegan Purses

Price: ~$125.00 – $245.00

Buy now on Angela Roi

 

6. Stella McCartney Vegan Handbags

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Stella McCartney Vegan Handbags

Stella McCartney is a true trailblazer in the fashion world. She was a big name advocating for cruelty-free and eco-friendly fashion back when most big names were still in the Dark Ages, creating designs with animal skin and fur. Stella was an advocate for cruelty-free fashion well before Gucci, Versace, and just recently Chanel went fur-free. (But thank God, other top designers are seeing the light and helping to end animal cruelty in the fashion industry.) Stella is a designer who wears her values and her heart on her sleeves and the world is better for it.

Price: ~$50.00 – $1,086.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

7. Canopy Verde Vegan Bags

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Canopy Verde Vegan Purses

Canopy Verde’s founder, Linda Wong, admits she’s a minimalist who doesn’t like the idea of “owning a lot stuff.” It might seem an odd statement coming from a product designer, but then again, Linda represents the values of other modern-day, progressive product designers who believe in quality over quantity and in minimizing waste.

Linda was inspired to create her own line of eco-friendly and vegan handbags after working in the fashion industry and seeing how much waste is generated season after season. She felt she could do better. And it was her love of mid-century Danish design and the character of her Brooklyn neighborhood that shaped her design aesthetic.

Canopy Verde produces their vegan handbags using methods that minimize waste and reuse materials whenever possible. In addition, they utilize PU vegan leather, which has a lighter carbon footprint than leather derived from animals. The linings of Canopy Verde bags are also eco-friendly: They’re made with GOTS certified organic cotton, which is dyed with Earth-friendly, chemical-free dyes.

Canopy Verde Vegan Shoulder Bags and HandbagsPrice: ~$59.00 – $169.00

Buy Now on Amazon

 

8. Vegan Leather Bags by Pixie Mood

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Pixie Mood Vegan Leather Bags

Pixie Mood says their top priority is creating beautiful handbags and purses that do not harm any of our furry friends. Their motto is: “There’s always room for fashion with compassion!”

In addition, the Pixie Mood team is committed to environmental sustainability and social causes. They focus on sourcing the most innovative and eco-friendly materials they can find, and they support charitable organizations like PETA and Progress Place Mental Wellness.

Price: ~$53.80 – $74.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

9. Piñatex Pineapple Leather Vegan Bags by Maravillas

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly

Piñatex Pineapple Leather Vegan Bags by Maravillas

Maravillas hand makes their sustainable, vegan handbags in their workshop in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. They do create some styles in traditional leather, so be sure to look for the designs that are made with 100% vegan and sustainable Piñatex Pineapple Leather. Maravillas’ founder, Christina Bussmann, is an advocate for timeless designs and she’s an activist against fast-fashion and its exploitation of people and nature.

Price: ~$62.00 – $379.00

Buy on Etsy

 

10. Piñatex Purses by Camille Vegan Bags

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly Brand

Piñatex Pineapple Leather Purses by Camille Vegan Bags

Camille Vegan Bags are created in the epicenter of the fashion world in Paris, France. Founders Raphaël and Camille Vial love to promote slow fashion, with a focus on quality and timeless design while still being affordable.

Price: ~$41.00 – $183.00

Buy on Etsy

 

Faux Suede Handbags and Purses

11. Red Maus Faux Suede Handbags

Red Maus Faux Suede Handbags

Red Maus designs minimalist and functional shoulder bags, backpacks, and other vegan bags with distressed faux vegan leather that reminds me of classic suede. Visit their Etsy store to see their collection.

Red Maus Faux Distressed Leather Handbags

Price: ~$65.00 – $79.00

Buy on Etsy

 

12. Faux Suede Shoulder Bag by Ellie’s Tribe

Faux Suede Shoulder Bag by Ellie’s Tribe

If you love the rugged look of suede but not the idea of harming animals, this faux suede laser-cut bag may me just what you’re looking for. It even has a little bit of fringe to give it a cool ’70s retro look.

Available colors: olive green and vintage black

Faux Suede Shoulder Bag by Ellie’s Tribe

Price: ~$18.95 – $34.95

Buy Now on Amazon

 

13. Faux Suede Fringe Bag

Faux Suede Fringe Bag

And if y0u want ever more fringe, check out this faux suede shoulder bag. It epitomizes cruelty-free, boho chic style.

Available colors: purple, brown, dark brown, gray, and black

Faux Suede Purple Fringe Bag

Price: ~$26.99 – $27.99

Buy Now on Amazon

 

Straw Handbags and Purses

Straw handbags make great vegan and eco-friendly purses, though it can be hard to find styles that don’t have leather straps. I’ve sent plenty of messages to straw handbag designers urging them to use faux leather in their bags! Fortunately, there are some handbag designers who are making fun, animal-friendly straw bags.

14. Handmade Natural Rattan Purse

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly

Handmade Natural Rattan Purse

This cute vegan handbag is made with 100% natural and eco-friendly straw, and it has a cotton lining. It’s perfect for a summer purse or a beach tote. This bag makes me want to go on vacation to Greece, the Caribbean, or somewhere equally as sunny and carefree.

Price: ~$35.97

Buy Now on Amazon

 

15. Natural Raffia Shoulder Bag

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly

Natural Raffia Shoulder Bag

Speaking of Greece, this natural raffia shoulder bag was handmade there. Artisans in Greece use a crochet weave to create this vegan, natural fiber shoulder bag.

Available colors: tan and black

Price: ~$84.77

Buy on Etsy

 

16. Classic Straw Beach Tote

3-leaf-icon-40 Eco-Friendly